neck and spine OA and fatigue

Sophiej
Sophiej Member Posts: 11
edited 9. Jun 2017, 14:17 in Say Hello Archive
Hello everyone,
It's good to be able to talk with fellow sufferers and I hope I will be able to offer words of comfort. I am still asking questions about OA although I have early stages of it.
I Was diagnosed several months ago by a rhuematologist and have been receiving physiotherapy, exercises that I perform myself, neck strengthening etc. I get extremely tired at times during the day, muzzy headed, headaches, tinnitus and the feeling of a weight being carried on the top of my head. I get good and bad days. I cannot plan anything as I never know how I am going to feel. I don't know whether my OA has worsened and whether I am getting cervicogenic headaches with dizziness. Has anyone experienced any of these symptoms please? This morning I pottered in the garden fir 10 minutes, put the cleaner over, cooked breakfast for my husband and cleared away and now I am overwhelmingly tired and having to lie down. Can anyone advise please? I'm 62. Thankyou.

Comments

  • moderator
    moderator Moderator Posts: 4,086
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Welcome to Arthritis Care Forums, Sophiej, from the moderation team.

    You have definitely come to the right place to talk about arthritis with those who understand.

    I am very sorry to hear you are struggling with neck pain and headaches as well as fatigue. It must difficult to know whether your OA has worsened or the headaches are due to your neck. If you are still seeing the physio it could well be worth asking there

    I don’t know whether it will help, but I have attached a link to Arthritis Care’s information about OA of the neck:

    https://www.arthritiscare.org.uk/do-i-have-arthritis/publications/448-osteoarthritis-of-the-neck

    As well as a link to information about coping with fatigue including pacing yourself amongst other strategies:

    https://www.arthritiscare.org.uk/living-with-arthritis/fatigue

    As moderators we are here to help with any problems you may have using the message boards so feel free to send us a message if you need to.

    I look forward to seeing you posting on the boards.

    Best wishes


    Ellen
  • Sophiej
    Sophiej Member Posts: 11
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thank you Ellen for replying so promptly. I will take a look at those sites you sent me. Thanks again.
  • moderator
    moderator Moderator Posts: 4,086
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    A pleasure Sophiej :)

    I hope they help a little.

    Keep in touch and let us know how you get on

    Ellen
  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 26,739
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Good morning Sophiej

    and welcome to the forums from me too :D

    I think I can sympathise with much of what you are saying I have cervical spondylosis too and had to have surgery on my back about 15 years ago.

    I went on one of arthritis cares courses I think it was called 'how to manage you long term condition' and learnt a lot. First of all about pacing myself. You did a lot yesterday morning and probably should have rested in between. A lot of us actually schedule rest breaks now.

    Especially for your neck it's very thin and carries a lot of weight. the pain in mine when it's playing up can be dreadful and knock me thoroughly sick.

    You don't say whether you are still seeing the rheumatologist? Or physio? If you are you could ask their advice about things worsening if not it's probably down to your GP.

    Please do come on in and have a look around the forums join in we are a friendly group of people.

    Love

    Toni xxx
    Love

    Toni xxx
  • Sophiej
    Sophiej Member Posts: 11
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello Toni,
    Thank you for your post and reassuring words. I'm so sorry that you have this too.
    My rheumatologist doesn't want to see me again but I am still seeing my physiotherapist. She's given me more exercises to do but I feel worse after doing them. I've only had three sessions but my neck has not improved. When my neck aches all other symptoms are there. I don't know whether I should leave them there for a while.
    I have been advised to take paracetamol and capsaicin cream for my affected areas.
    I have been back to my GP recently and he gave me medication for the wooziness but it interacts with the citalopram that I am taking for anxiety so I have stopped it.
    I cannot see any way out of this, I just seem to be getting deeper and deeper.
    How have you coped for so long with this horrible condition? Can you advise on meds for pain and wooziness?
    Thank you very much
    Take care x
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 26,271
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello and welcome from me, too :)

    I'm sorry to hear that you have arthritis but you've come to the right place as we do understand the demands it makes on us.

    My OA came about as a result of many years of RA. My back is largely OK but I have very little movement now in my neck. I do exercises to hang on to that movement. I've always been taught to be gentle with neck exercises ie to take my neck through the full range of movements I can but to do it slowly. I don't get any wooziness.

    On the whole, exercising our affected joints is not only good but essential to prevent further deterioration. If your physiotherapist is aware of all you have told us but still thinks you should carry on then that's probably your best course of action.

    I think wooziness and drowsiness are listed as common side effects of citalopram so it might not be the exercises that are causing the wooziness though, if it's there, I can see they might make it worse. Also, if you are taking any other prescribed medication, or herbal or dietary supplements, they can interact to cause such symptoms. Your local pharmacist could tell you what it's safe to combine.

    We all take various different pain-relieving meds. Your GP is the one to decide on what's best for you as he/she knows you best. Unfortunately, the stronger pain relief also causes drowsiness so is probably not your best bet.

    I'm sure you will, in time, learn to cope with the OA. We all do. At first it's scary and our lives seem totally changed but we learn to adapt, do things a little differently and hang on to all the important things. I do hope you'll find that's they way things will be for you.
    "The deeper sorrow carves into your being the more joy you can contain." Kahlil Gibran
  • Sophiej
    Sophiej Member Posts: 11
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello stickywicket,
    Many thanks for your post and your good advice. So sorry you are suffering with your neck too, mine is not bad like yours, I don't have RA, I still have good movement it just hurts and crunches when I turn my head. And of course all of the other symptoms previously mentioned. However, having said that, I have had a really good day today, neck pain hardly noticeable, no muzzy head or giddiness. The only thing I can think of is when I saw the physiotherapist Monday she did actually do some neck and shoulder manipulation. I ached on Tuesday all day but today has been a good one. I've been busy all day. I had a long chat with a pharmacist in a med review and he advised to continue with the physio home exercises and to try and manage with paracetamol for the pain, drink plenty of water and exercise. He noticed that I had a posture problem as did my physiotherapist which she said helped OA along. I came away with vit b12 for tiredness but I haven't had tiredness today. I have had good days before but I know how the following day can be so very different.
    Thank you for responding to my post, I send my best wishes to you.
    Take care
    Sophie
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 26,271
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thank you :D

    That's great news that you had a good day and also that you had the chance to talk to your pharmacist. I think we all tend to underestimate the value of good, plain water.

    I hope it was the manipulation that helped because, if we know what makes things better or worse, we can try to repeat or avoid them.

    I do hope today is just as good.
    "The deeper sorrow carves into your being the more joy you can contain." Kahlil Gibran
  • Sophiej
    Sophiej Member Posts: 11
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello,
    Well, that was shortlived. Yesterday I felt really good, today I'm back to earth with a bump. Neck ache, muzzy head, tired etc etc etc. Managed to go out to vote, didn't feel like cooking so got a take away for hubby and me. Did my exercises but haven't felt any benefit from them today, just the opposite. Hoping for a better day tomorrow. Hope you are all coping ok.
    Best wishes
  • TrishaW
    TrishaW Member Posts: 121
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi there
    I also have arthritis in my neck and had very severe symptoms a few years back (constant pain, tingling and numbness in limbs etc)

    Now, if I take good care of my neck, it's much better and the pain is far less (and at times barely noticable), so you may improve too.

    Everyone is different and obviously I can't advise what will be best for you but my pain was much reduced by osteopathic massage (NO manipulation though!)
    That's because the muscles go into spasm to 'protect' the neck and actually cause a lot of the pain and stiffness.
    The neck muscles go right down over your shoulder blades and up to your scalp, so working on those muscles (by a skilled practitioner) made a huge difference to me.
    I also found heat wraps helped the painful muscles, and a good memory foam pillow to sleep on (that I take everywhere when away from home)
    Take care with shoulder bags etc ( a light cross body bag or 'bum bag' may be better and avoid heavy coats/collars etc. Some people suggest a light silk scarf to stop chills to your neck.
    Avoid sitting with your head turned ('face on' is best)
    The 'woosiness' may possibly be due to arthritis snagging your nerves in your neck or impinging your blood supply to your head...do they happen when you look up or turn your head? My dad used to pass out due to arthritic spurs impinging on his vagel nerve. I can never look up high, nor would I attempt to do so.
    When pacing yourself you really need to do far less than you think you can do, and rest regularly. If you do this you may be able to build up to doing more, but start slowly.
    Good luck!
    Trisha
  • Sophiej
    Sophiej Member Posts: 11
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Trisha,
    Thank you for your reassuring post, it gives me hope. Massage is something I will look into, there is someone quite local to me who is an osteopath. Today started bad but as the day went on it was good. Muzzy head first thing but no dizziness. When I do experience dizziness it us usually when I turn to my right in bed which makes me wonder if it is an internal ear thing. I sometimes get the feeling when looking up too, but not all of the time.
    I'm so glad you are coping, you appear to be doing well, perhaps I'm going through a flare up. I still have tinnitus but that could be drug induced ie aspirin, citalopram. My neighbour who has been drilling for hours on end this past week hasn't helped either.
    Thank you so much for your support, I felt a little relieved after reading it.
    Best wishes
    Sophie