Posted 4/14/2021 7:47 AM (GMT -6)
OF, like you I have the constant aching in the upper back & across the shoulders. Some days are worse than others it just depends, typically I can deal with it until the burning pain rears up. I stay away from heat most of the time. When I do use heat I wet a hand towel & nuke it in the microwave & wrap it around my neck. Cold packs help with the burning pain.
Some things to look at; age of your bed pillow, if it's soft try a firmer one & make sure part of shoulders are on the pillow. It took me a long time to figure this out.
Age of the mattress on your bed, myself I need a firm mattress for overall body support. I cannot sleep on a pillowtop mattress, they are too soft for me. Over the years we have tried so many different mattresses, including having them made by a local mattress company. We are due a new one & we plan to see what they can make for us. We found a particular brand of a mattress that we like & I want to see if they can make one like it.
Wear good shoes with plenty of support & switch them out, don't wear the same pair every day. I buy either a good running shoe or walking sneaker.
Light daily exercises helps me with my neck for mobility. I've done so much physical therapy the past 25 years I know which ones to do, lol. This helps particularly with my driving & being able to turn my head.
about your possible need for surgery later. Have you had a recent MRI done on your neck? Do you have a copy of the written report from the first one so you can compare the two reports? If not, I would obtain those reports.
Have you seen a rheumatologist to be checked for RA? You mentioned having labs done hopefully you will get the results soon. I hope your dr had your vitamin D level checked. Low vitamin D can cause a lot of issues for people.
Before entertaining any thoughts of further surgery if this were me I would look for the best neurosurgeon & get a 2nd opinion. I am not saying your dr is not competent, however, there is nothing wrong with getting a 2nd & even 3rd opinions from different drs. You owe it to yourself to have a fresh set of eyes to look at your situation. Even if you have to travel a little to see one I would do it. It's easy to go online & google top 10 neurosurgeons close to where you live. Typically Healthgrades will pop up & start from there checking drs out.