I finally received the results from the x-rays on my cervical spine. The good news is that the x-rays were normal and my upper back / neck are not being affected my Rheumatoid Arthritis. The bad news is that the rheumatologist could not give me any answers whatsoever.
I have been doing everything I can to release the tension in my back but nothing has helped at all. I have tried heating pads, ice packs, hot showers, baths with Epsom salts, muscle patches, cervical spine pillows, stretching, working on my posture, and pain killers. I also tried a muscle relaxant that the doctor gave me over the summer for the same problem, but it just took the edge off.
I went for a massage yesterday and a hour later I was over the moon to feel semi-normal again. By the time I went to bed I was tensed up again and barely slept.
I made an appointment with my primary care physician to see if there is anything else we could do. We went over everything and he was pretty much at a loss. It is not my bones or joints and he does not think that it is nerves because I am not experiencing numbness. He examined my back and said that my muscles seemed pretty soft, yet all I feel in tenseness and pain.
He offered me stronger pain killers, which is definitely not the direction I wanted to go because it would not be treating the cause. After a long discussion, I finally asked about a stronger muscle relaxant. He told me I could double up on what I have been taking and I told him that I wanted to stick to the pain killers that I already have. I did agree to try a lidocaine pain patch that I have not tried before and maybe call a chiropractor.
In the end the doctor told me that if this does not work he wants me to see someone about pain management and possible injections. I just hope that this helps enough that I can go back to doing yoga and exercising, which will hopefully help even more. Plus losing weight will help a lot.