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Have sore throat, headache and hurts to move head. How to get relief?

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It hurts to turn my head in the area where skull connects to vertebrae and i have sore throat. No other symptoms except maybe a headache but i could be confusing that with the pain i have to turn my head left right up and down. What could this be? Please help. Thanks. XXXXXXX
Posted Fri, 15 Mar 2013 in Headache and Migraines
Answered by Dr. Y V Siva Sankara Murty 15 minutes later

Thanks for writing to health care magic.

Since when are you having this problem? Did you get injured recently? Did it start up early in the morning after waking up (may be because of poor posture while lying down). Were you viewing the computer in a abnormal posture? Is there any history of fever? Are there any vomiting associated?

Most probable condition that presents with such complaints is stiff neck. Of course further detailed examination is required to confirm the diagnosis.

In case of stiff neck simple analgesics and rest are required. The symptoms disappear within 2 to 3 days.

You should consult your doctor immediately if there is any history of fall/injury or any history of fever, vomiting, sleepiness etc. What we are worried about in these scenarios is cervical spine injury and meningitis. Also consult your doctor if the symptoms aggravate or persist.

Hope this helps.
Take care.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Have sore throat, headache and hurts to move head. How to get relief? 46 minutes later
I was sitting at my computer earlier reading my kindle books and at first felt like there was some type of XXXXXXX jaw pain on my left side (i thought initially it was due to grinding my teeth, or i.e. keeping my jaw tight). Then the pain went away from my jaw and now it is just painful to turn my head in all directions. I am perfectly capable of touching my chin to my chest with mild pain. The most pain is when i look up and put a bend in my neck like the vulture animal. Second most pain is when i look left. Third is right. And fourth, looking down is least pain. Also, two days ago i aerated a yard using my zeroturn mower to pull the rolling aerator. I spent a whole lot of time backing up and going forward completely. Everytime i backed up i had to significantly turn my head in order to maneuver the aerator going in reverse on the mower. I spent much time looking left than right everytime i reversed almost straining my neck to see behind. I assume i look left more as it is more comfortable for me as it is same for the way i sleep on my stomach i turn my head left. When i finished the aerating that day i felt disoriented as if i stretched something in my neck so much as to cause the disorientation. I remember really giving my neck a good stretch because of the strange feeling. However, nothing seemed to be painful or showing any of the symptoms i described in the earlier query i submitted, until two days later to this time right now and maybe about 5 hours ago the neck pain slowly came on internally as if to blame my jaw for the pain until it got worse and i was able to more accurately figure where the pain truly is. Please let me know of any more information if you have any professional opinion in regards to this matter. This is truly of great help. Thank you again. Sincerely, XXXXXXX
Answered by Dr. Y V Siva Sankara Murty 16 minutes later

Thanks for your reply and further details.

Mostly all the stress and strain you put on your neck was responsible for your problem. Also your computer viewing might have added to the problem.

Stiff neck generally takes few days to resolve.
Rest is useful. Stop normal physical activities for a few days.
Gentle massage by a partner may be of help.
Hot compresses or a heat pad or application of ice may be of help.
Analgesics may be of help to reduce pain.
Firm bed and neck collar may be of use.

I already indicated of the danger symptoms and signs (like vomiting, breathlessness, fever, chest pain etc) in which case one should rule out other diagnosis. (like meningitis, cervical spine injury, heart attack with referred pain to the neck)

If the symptoms do not subside in the short duration as indicated one may have to consult a doctor for further investigations. Doctor may get a X-ray cervical spine, CT, MRI etc. depending on the clinical scenario.

Hope this helps.
Take care.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Have sore throat, headache and hurts to move head. How to get relief? 12 hours later
I just woke up the next day, today. I do not have as much pain when I turn my head in any direction anymore. A lot of it is gone but some still there, as if I have some slight, strange headache. When I walk around I feel a bit lightheaded, or disoriented, as if I'm experiencing the side effects of a pain killer. My throat is still sore. I am not nauseous, or coughing at all. I took my temperature just a second ago because of the way I feel. Its a food thermometer I put into my right armpit for 5 minutes. It is 101 degrees, maybe 100 for the thermometer reading.

Nothing is severe, my overall mood and pain and everything I would say is about somewhere between 3 to 5 out of 10 (whereas 10 being the worst).

Please let me know if you have anymore insight on what it may be I'm experiencing. I really hope it is not bacterial meningitis, I keep looking that up and the main "classic" symptoms are fever, stiff neck, and headache.

According to my thermometer, I do have a fever, and if stiff neck is categorized as being slightly painful to turn my head in any direction I feel I may have that as well, and I do have a slight headache, but again, I may be confusing that with the slight pain I have to turn my head as well as my peculiar state of slight drowsiness (as if I'm on a pain killer). I also still have a slight sore throat.

Although, all of my symptoms do not feel as serious as it did last night, however I do feel them, and it is enough for me to be concerned about it as to ask my final follow-up question.

Please, let me know. Thank you very much again. XXXXXXX
Answered by Dr. Y V Siva Sankara Murty 6 hours later

Thanks for writing back.

You are showing improvement as it happens in stiff neck. But the lightheadedness or disorientation definitely cannot be explained by stiff neck. Besides that normal pain killers do not normally cause such side effects. Did you use any opioid analgesics for pain relief? Did you ever get your blood pressure checked? Did you have proper sleep at night?

Sore throat could be because of an infection. Presence of fever confirms that you are indeed suffering with an infection. A physical examination and investigation (if required post examination) can reveal the nature of infection and whether or not it is related to other problems.

Stiff neck in a case of meningitis is classically felt when bending your neck (chin to chest). You clearly described that you have the least pain while doing that - therefore it is unlikely to be meningitis.

I would suggest you to record/monitor temperature with a proper thermometer. Watch the progress of your symptoms. At any point of time, you do not feel well, do not hesitate to see your local doctor. You can use paracetamol for fever.

Keep me updated if possible. I wish for your speedy recovery.

Hope this helps. Let me know if you have other concerns.

Take care
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