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Have occasional severe ache at the bottom of skull. What could be causing this?

Feb 2014
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Answered by

Orthopaedic Surgeon, Joint Replacement
Practicing since : 2004
Answered : 5931 Questions
I have occasional severe ache at the bottom of my skull which makes it hard to raise my head off my pillow when it happens at night. this usually happens after certain activities although I kick box and this doesn't effect it. Also when I turn my head from side to side there is a scraping sound like sandpaper. What could be causing this. I walk regularly and this also does not initiate the pain. The sound is always there.I forgot to mention that three years ago, I hit the back of my head rather hard in the refrigerator. It was extremely painful initially but that pain subsided. But I recall these other symptoms occuring at some point after this.
Posted Sat, 10 Nov 2012 in Headache and Migraines
Answered by Dr. Saurabh Gupta 1 hour later
Thanks for posting your query.

You might suffering from cervical spondylosis. It is a common degenerative condition of the cervical spine. It is most likely caused by age-related changes in the intervertebral disks.

I suggest you to consult an orthopaedician nearby for a detailed examination. You may get the X-ray of the cervical spine under his/her guidance to look for arthritis or other changes in your spine.

Your doctor after diagnosing the condition may refer you for physical therapy. The physical therapist will help you reduce your pain using stretches. The therapist will show you how to do exercises that make your neck muscles stronger.

You can take analgesic and muscle relaxant after discussing with your doctor.

You also need some life style modification like-

Do not sit for prolonged period of time in stressful postures
Do use firm collars while traveling
Do not lift heavy weights on head or back
Do not turn from your body but turn your body moving your feet first
Do turn to one side while getting up from lying down
Do the exercises prescribed regularly
Do use firm mattress, thin pillow or butterfly shaped pillow
Do not lie flat on your stomach.

Hope I have answered your query. Let me know if you have any more concerns.

Please accept my answer in case you do not have further queries.

Wishing you good health.
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