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Chronic Migraines & Degenerated discs in neck

Hi everyone,
I have had chronic daily migraine for more than 14 years now and have just been diagnosed with degenerated discs in my neck. I'm just wondering if anyone else has this combination and what they do to relieve the pain.

Cindy Boily

  1. Cindy-Boily,

    Spinal issues are a common comorbidity with Migraine. Those of us who have it are an unfortunate bunch to be sure!

    The fact is, Migraine can trigger muscle and neck problems, and spinal problems can trigger Migraine attacks. In fact, one particular type of headache disorder is called cervicogenic headache, and it comes specifically from problems with the upper body and neck.

    I have tried a lot of things to relieve the pain of my neck problems, which are fairly severe. What works for one, may not work for another. I highly suggest seeking the help of your doctor. This is indeed a touchy area.

    Some patients have luck with chiropractic or osteopathic manipulative therapy. Others prefer massage therapy or acupuncture. Still others prefer physical therapy to strengthen their frame and minimize problems in that area. I've tried all of these with varying success. The thing that helped the most for me, was Botox in my neck, back and head for chronic Migraine. It stopped many of the spasms that were making my neck almost immobile. When I was able to move again, the pain was greatly reduced. My nerves were freed and my mobility is SO much better. I can't rebuild my bad discs or collapsed vertebrae, but I can maximize what I do have left.

    Keeping your neck and spine healthy is going to be really important for you, and it's best to start now before it gets worse, as these things are wont to due as we age. Think of it as preventive medicine for your pain load.

    ~Ellen

    1. Hi Cindy,

      I too have issues with my cervical spine. In fact I had a two level cervical fusion in 2004 to help with a bit of nerve damage I had.

      I find that my TENS unit helps with tension-type headache and neck tension and can sometimes prevent a TTH from turning into a migraine. Heat is also a helpful comfort measure as I am unable to tolerate cold on my head or neck.

      I hope you find this helpful,
      Nancy

      1. Ive had migraines since I was 17 and it has been compounded by neck injuries and pain in my neck often triggers a migraine

        1. saffstar,

          Have you ever discussed the possibility of cervicogenic headaches with your doctor? They're caused by neck injuries and other issues with the neck, and they can trigger Migraines, as you said. The treatment for cervicogenic headaches is to treat the source of the neck problem. You can see more at https://migraine.com/blog/cervicogenic-headache/.

          Teri

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