When should I call the doctor if I have neck pain?

Contact your doctor if you have neck pain that interferes with work or other daily activities.

In rare cases, neck pain can be a sign of a medical emergency. Seek urgent medical care if your neck pain:

  • Develops after having an accident.
  • Happens with numbness or tingling in the arms, shoulders or legs.
  • Occurs with weakness in legs or loss of coordination in arms or legs.
  • Includes headache, dizziness, nausea, or vomiting.
  • Involves loss of bowel or bladder control.
  • Arises along with a stiff neck.
  • Occurs with chills, fever, or unexplained weight loss.
  • Stays the same when resting or moving.
  • Does not respond to over-the-counter medications.
  • Does not lessen after one week.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 12/12/2019.

References

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