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Forum Name: Rheumatology Topics

Question: Stiff Neck and numbness


 DonnaMac - Sat Jan 22, 2005 10:59 pm

Every morning for the past 6 months I have woken up with a stiff neck. Now at the same time this started happening I also started to feel numbness in my fingers(similar to "pins and needles") and shocklike feelings up my arms. I was wondering if anyone could tell me if these are symptoms of something and if they could be related somehow. I have no medical conditions, don't smoke, and I exercise regularly.
 Dr. Anthony Solomon - Sun Jan 23, 2005 1:35 pm

A common cause of chronic neck pain or stiffness without fever is degenerative joint disease.Your complaints are suggestive of cervical spondylosis, which results from chronic cervical disc degeneration.

Usual symptoms are neck pain, stiffness, occipital headaches, nerve root pain, and paraesthesiae, which are abnormal tingling sensations which you have correctly described as "pins and needles" in your fingers.

A plain radiograph of the neck region will assist in diagnosis, but CT or MRI scan will confirm the diagnosis and exclude other structural causes. Please consult your primary care physician to arrange for radiological survey of your cervical spine.

I hope this information is helpful.

Dr Anthony Solomon
MB BS DTM&H DIP.VEN FRSM
Consultant Physician, Tropical & Genitourinary Medicine
 DonnaMac - Sun Jan 23, 2005 2:22 pm

Thank you...I will get it checked out. Is this a dangerous thing? I am only 30...is it common in some one my age??
 Dr. Anthony Solomon - Tue Jan 25, 2005 9:50 pm

About 60 - 70% of the adult population have X-ray findings of cervical spondylosis. Most patients are without symptoms but pain in the neck provoked by neck movements is the commonest symptom. The condition causes concern when the cervical canal is narrowed, compressing the spinal cord, or the spinal cord vessels are occluded producing neurological symptoms. It is better to await the findings of radiological survey of your spine to exclude or confirm the condition.


Dr Anthony Solomon

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