My fabulous husband was able to get me in to see one of the most respected physiatrists in the area, Dr. Kathleen Fink. My appointment was a morning slot in late January. I arrived at her office, and filled out all the necessary paperwork. I was greeted by a pleasant assistant who guided me to the exam room. After a short wait, Dr. Fink appeared, a sight for sore eyes. She is a gentle soft spoken women, very pleasant demeanor. Dr. Fink took the time to discuss my history with me. She viewed the MRI on her computer, and although Dr. Balint (horrible doctor who was procedure happy) thought I had a bulging disc causing the pain, Dr. Fink quickly dismissed the minor bulge, which was a typical situation for a woman my age.
A stark difference was noted during this exam vs other exams I had. Not one of the other two doctors even had me lay on the table...I was lucky they even touched the area of pain on my neck, albiet for only a few seconds. Dr. Fink had me lay down and checked my allignment with hips, legs, etc. Then she started feeling around my neck. She identified the area of the pain immediately. She said my pain was closer to C1, C2, not the C4, C5 that the other doctors indicated. Then she noticed that I was wearing invisalign. She asked me how long I was undergoing orthodontia. She point out that my face had some asymmetry. Diagnosis: cervical facets atlanto-axial/atlanto-occipital with jaw alignment issues.
She said she was not claiming that I had TMJ, but she wants me to see a physical therapist who specializes in jaw issues and TMJ. So, I call to get on this PT's calendar, and once again I must wait!! Until April!! So in the meantime, I continue with my current therapist.
The thing that baffles me is that the other doctors did not pick up on the jaw issues. All I can say is a good doctor is truly hard to come by!!