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What can cause pain in the back of neck and head?

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Dr. Praveen Tayal

Orthopaedic Surgeon

Practicing since :1994

Answered : 11571 Questions

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Posted on Thu, 6 Sep 2018 in Brain and Spine
Question: Pain in back of neck and back of head
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Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
Can be due to cervical spondylosis.

Detailed Answer:

Hi,

Thanks for posting your query.

Pain in back of head and neck can be due to degenerative disc changes or cervical spondylosis. It happens primarily due to degenerative changes secondary to age in the cervical spine. Past neck injury may also contribute to the degeneration.

X-ray of neck in lateral view or MRI will help in the diagnosis.

Treatment includes
1. Use of cervical collar helps in immobilization and brings relief.
2. Medical drugs like pain killers - Acetaminophen/Ibuprofen and muscle relaxants might be helpful.
3. Methylcobalamin supplements are also recommended for nerve compression symptoms.
4. Cervical isometric exercises are beneficial to maintain the strength of the neck muscles. Neck and upper back stretching exercises, as well as light aerobic activities, also are recommended under the guidance of a physical therapist.
5. Hot fomentation helps in relieving acute symptoms.
6. You can avoid using a pillow.

As you try these measures, I also encourage you to consult an orthopedician for both evaluation and to avail stronger prescription medications (if over the counter medications are not helpful).

I hope this answers your query.

Dr. Praveen Tayal, Orthopaedic Surgeon
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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