View Full Version : Neck/trap injury

Robert F. Gutierrez
08-25-2004, 07:51 AM
a few years ago I sustained a neck njury while training in submission grappling. I started getting bad "stingers" down my right arm when I would get a jarring blow to my head. I ended up going to two separate nuerosurgeons who did MRI's and diagnosed me with slightly bulging disc and bone spurs, and both did not recomend surgery. They both basically advised me to find another sport or if I continued to train in jiujitsu, not to go full speed (yeah right). I I have tried just about avery type of physical therapy (massage, chiropractic, steroid injection, acupuncture, etc.) short of surgery, and nothing seems to take care of it. I continued to try training but I would always inevetably get the stingers. I ended up taking a couple of years off from training, but am missing it lately and want to start training again before i get too old (I am currently 36). I have also been advised by my physical therapist that I have a lot of scar tissue in my trap area, which he thinks is causing the pinching of the nerve (which causes the stinger). When I roll my right shoulder back I feel the popping of the scar tissue in the trap area. I tend to agree with the PT and was wondering if anyone out there has ever had a similar injury or heard of any type of surgery to remove scar tissue from the trap area or any other type of treatment for this. Any feedback or advise would be greatly appreciated.

Keith Wittenstein
08-25-2004, 10:31 AM
I got dumped on the side of my head in practice one day and got a horrible stinger. For about two months every time I rolled, I would inevitably get another one. My training frequency dimished greatly and I eventually stopped for about 2 or 3 months. I did some PT, ART, chiropractic, massage and lots of yoga. I'm back to training again and I don't get stingers anymore. My right upper back and shoulder are still a little jacked up and cramp up sometimes, but nothing bad enough to warrant me getting surgery.

Have you tried yoga? I can't believe you've taken that much time off the mat. At the very least, get one or two training partners that you can roll light with and get your chops back.

Beth Moscov
08-25-2004, 10:45 AM
HI Robert,

There is a type of physical therapy known as IMT. It is very strange to me because it is not at all deep work and sometimes even seems as if the therapists hands are just resting on me at odd angles. However, four years ago I had similar symptoms as yours but with constant "stingers" at all times of the day or night. The prescription pain meds didn't cut it nor did any of the other therapies I tried. I finally was sent to PT and had major relief after the first session and the pain was gone after a few months. The therapist said that the techniques remove past scar tissue amongst other things. It would certainly be worth trying before going under the knife. Here is their web site where you can learn more and find someone in your area: http://www.centerimt.com/index2.asp


Robert F. Gutierrez
08-25-2004, 02:43 PM
Thanks Keith and Beth for your suggestions. I will definately look into the IMT that you suggested. I also just borrowed "Yoga For Martial Artists" DVD from my training partner, but I just havent had a chance to do the routine. It's good to hear of other people that have had similar injuries, and that have found ways to overcome them without having to give up the sports that we love.