Does anyone have sternocleidomastoid muscle pain and swelling?

On the “bad” side of my neck, my sternocleidomastoid muscle (it wraps from just below the ear to about the clavicle)is killing me!! And there is some swelling. I’ve had an MRI, CT and sonogram and there is no mass or anything remarkable. Does anyone out there have anything like this? Do you think it’s GPN related? It’s driving me crazy!!!

I do have muscle pains but mine are more in the shoulder area. I do have neck pains, however. What is interesting is that when I have massages when the therapist massages my shoulder it refers to my ear.

I have something similar in that I have awful neck and shoulder pain on my right side (GPN side). I have a couple of things going on, one of them being bad neck alignment but also when I read my MRI report it states that my PICA is distorting the roots of the 11th cranial nerve too, which is the accessory nerve and that controls the muscles of the sternocleidomastoid and trapezius.

The pain is much better when my neck gets aligned but it doesn't last long.

Jeffina, that is so helpful I hadn’t thought about that, but my MRI shows the PICA also lies directly on top of the root entry of glosso nerve and I do have other cranial nerves affected, so why not the 11th nerve as well. It’s the swelling I don’t understand…but maybe all the irritation causes it to swell. Thanks to you and Edna for responding. That makes a lot of sense to me. I’ve found more info on this site than I have from any medical professional.

Nikki, I do have Sternocleidomastoid pain. GPN symptoms 1st start when PT noticed it would spasm when I lift following C6 C7 disk surgery. My ENT said he felt the GPN was from the carotid sheath being over stretched during surgery. All coming together now. The crainial nerves IX glossopharyngeal, X vagus and XI accessory all exit the skull through the Jugular Foramen and are in the carotid sheath at that point. Maybe your sternocleidomastoid is in spam, not swollen. My PT could see it. Feels like I am being strangled on the right side.

Never knew that was what it is called but YES...It becomes inflamed when the pain is at it's worst. I can press that area when I am suffering with breakthrough pain and it helps relieve the stabs. I hate this freaking condition.

OMG! I can hardly believe it. This area where the sternocleidomastoid muscle connects behind my ear, I have such terrible pain that comes and then goes. The attacks are so bad, that they are crippling. I have both ATN and GPN and am miserable 24/7, though it gets extremely worse as the day wears on; by evening most often I am crying.

This site helps me keep sane. Doctors, family just don't get it. We all have to know this is REAL and keep on trying to enjoy the small joyful times and anything we still can do without pain. I can walk. I can see the beauty in the world around me. I can hug my family. I can pray. I have a safe warm place to live. There are many in this world who have it harder than me. Sometimes it feels, with this pain, I can not do it another day, but I do. :)

Ice pick, I’m having a particularly miserable morning, and then I read your post. Thanks for putting it in perspective. I needed that!!! Counting my many blessings.