Symptoms and treatment of osteochondrosis of the cervical spine

Osteochondrosis is a disease of the spine, the main symptom of which is a decrease in the intervertebral discs and disruption of work in them.

neck pain with osteochondrosis

Osteochondrosis is a fairly common disease among people of different ages. In men and women, pain in the spine is most often manifested by the age of 40. In old age, osteochondrosis affects 90% of the population. The most common type of such a disease is osteochondrosis of the cervical spine. We will talk about him.

Causes of osteochondrosis

When the aging process starts, the functions of blood vessels, bones and cartilage deteriorate; with all these indicators, the body still does not receive a sufficient amount of vitamins, which aggravates the process.

But there are also reasons, not related to aging, because of which the disease can manifest itself earlier than usual.

  • Excess weight. It causes metabolic disorders and overloads the intervertebral disc.
  • Heredity.
  • Injury.
  • Passive lifestyle. As well as being in one position for a long time (driving).
  • Diseases of the musculoskeletal system (flat feet, poor posture). Due to such diseases, the load on the spine is uneven.
  • Strong stress on the spine (multiple pregnancies).

Signs of osteochondrosis of the cervical spine

This type of osteochondrosis manifests itself more often than others. This happened due to the fact that the cervical vertebrae are located very close to each other and have a structure different from other vertebrae.

Why are the cervical vertebrae displaced? This is due to their age-related fragility and poor development of the muscular frame of the neck.

In addition to pain, arteries or a nerve bundle can also be pinched from the displacement of the cervical vertebrae. Due to pains of different localization, osteochondrosis can be confused with other diseases.

Here are other symptoms of osteochondrosis:

  • Pain in different parts of the body. In the region of the heart, back of the head, neck, shoulders and collarbones. There may also be weakness in the arms and problems with spreading the arms to the sides. This is due to pinched nerves in the cervical spine.
  • Numbness in the fingers. Tingling sensation at the tips of the fingers and low sensitivity of the hands.
  • Discomfort when turning the head. Crackling of the vertebrae, lumbago in the neck, dizziness, heaviness in the head or lack of air. If these symptoms are especially acute during sports, this indicates the initial stage of the development of osteochondrosis. All of the above comes from the appearance of bony formations in the neck.
  • Vision problems. Deterioration of vision, haze or flickering black spots. This indicates a late stage of osteochondrosis and arises from an insufficient amount of blood in the brain.
  • Discomfort in the throat. A feeling of a lump in the throat, perspiration and difficulty swallowing are signs of the initial stage of development of osteochondrosis. Frequent nausea may also occur.

Treatment of osteochondrosis

What happens during treatment?

Under X-ray control, needles are inserted into the facet joints of the cervical spine. Through them, two drugs are injected to the affected joints: a local anesthetic, which removes pain, and a hormone, which will further relieve inflammation in the problem area.

This blockade can provide relief for a long time. However, if the pain has returned, provided that the blockade has a positive effect, then it is possible to perform radiofrequency ablation of the nerves that take the pain away from the joints.

Such a procedure is always performed only in the second stage and leads to a lasting positive effect (from one to several years).

What are the advantages of this type of treatment for osteochondrosis?

  • Does not require general anesthesia and lasts no longer than an hour.
  • The patient can go home within a couple of hours after the procedure.
  • Minimal risk of complications.
  • Weak and aged patients can also be treated in this way.
  • The recovery period does not exceed 2 days.

To speed up the recovery process, we recommend to undergo a postoperative exercise therapy course. This is a type of therapy that includes certain physical activity after surgery. All exercises are selected individually by the attending physician.