Sleeping on back…styloid IJV position question

I received my results from the vascular neurologist. My results show no IJV or carotid compression, but that was only from an MRV, no dynamic testing was done.

The doctor called me yesterday to discuss the results and I said well it seems when I’m sleeping on my back (elevated) and my chin tucks in inadvertently that there’s a possibility that I have compression during sleep.

And he said something to the effect of “no that’s not really the way the anatomy works”. I have gotten to a point where I just don’t even question doctors anymore… And I just move on.

Please help me double check this… As my brain is foggy at this moment. But doesn’t it make sense that when you tilt your head down and your neck is straight, the styloid in my case, which is quite close to left C1 transverse process, would then move closer and or compress structures in between the styloid and C1?

This is another one where I do not understand how a doctor can look at a CTV and not make this connection… (As an aside, I do have thoracic outlet symptoms as well, and those I suspect are contributing to my problem… But yet, that’s another difficult one as we all know to go after.)

I’ll be working on another sleeping position :crossed_fingers::crossed_fingers::crossed_fingers:.

Edit to add, that, since my left side IJV is apparently insignificant in draining my brain, and my right side is quite dominant… Perhaps that would lead to enough drainage because the right transverse process is eight or so mm away from the styloid on the right. Which would lead me to look more towards thoracic outlet for compression, and then styloid for my nerve issues.

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I think that others have found chin tuck position doesn’t help with IJV compression. Have you tried sleeping propped up, that really helped me? I think that you’re right with your head positioning theory although I’m not an anatomy expert!


Yes, I am sleeping elevated… but find I’m sliding down… I suspect both TOS (scalenes extremely tight) and some bit of compression by my styloid. TY ))

Hi @Leah. I also sleep on my back and my chin would tuck inadvertently and cause even worse symptoms. The sliding makes the chin tuck worse for me. I place a big pillow at the foot of my bed for my feet to push on and it’s helps me with the slide. When there is no foot board I tuck the sheet tight to keep it from falling off and the pillow provides a little tent for foot space.

I had a CT done a long time ago for CCI/AAI and noticed on my images that when I’m in neck flexion during the CT my left styloid slams up against my C1. In neutral, its close to C1. My right styloid does not make contact to my C1 in flexion as it is angled a little more forward than my left.


Thank you for those tips! Sleeping has been much of my problem and am grateful that with ‘a lot’ of walking in the morning, I can get my seemingly much deprived brain relief. Before I ‘met my styloid’, I had started walking on the treadmill for 2 hours in the morning to relieve my myriad of symptoms… particularly brain fog and tight neck and upper back muscles. I had stopped the treadmill as was concerned with the ‘pounding’ of my styloid, but I am doing it again, just paying attention to my head position.

I suspect I have CCI from whiplash, not diagnosed, as so far, no doctor is concerned with the position of C1. So pulling apart the pieces is challenging as you all know. All the best, Leah