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Dr. Andrew Rynne
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Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

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What does sudden onset of left sided neck pain indicate?

Answered by
Dr.
Dr. Olsi Taka

Neurologist

Practicing since :2004

Answered : 3650 Questions

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Posted on Tue, 30 Aug 2016 in Brain and Spine
Question: I'm 53 in relatively good shape and don't smoke. I have a subtle pain in the left side of my neck that came on slowly for the past couple weeks. I'm getting concerned.
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Answered by Dr. Olsi Taka 3 hours later
Brief Answer:
Read below

Detailed Answer:
I read your question carefully and I understand your concern.

In the overwhelming part neck pain carries no threat, worrying issues like say cancer usually are painless. The most common cause is muscle strain. It usually subsides in about a month, if troubling the symptoms may be alleviated through antiinflammatory over the counter pain killers like Naproxen or Ibuprofen, may be combined with a muscle relaxant like Flexeril.

Neck arthritis is another common cause, its probability increasing over the years due to the wear and tear of the spine. In some cases it may be complicated with disc bulges, causing compression of nerve roots or spinal cord, but there is nothing in your description to indicate that. Medication to alleviate the symptoms is with the same drugs mentioned above and physical therapy sessions in order to enable your muscles to offer better support to your spine.

If the symptoms persist for over a month without improvement, or increase, or there are new signs such as weakness or tingling of the limbs then perhaps a neck MRI should be scheduled to give a more complete assessment of the neck structures.

I remain at your disposal for other questions.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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