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Neck Pain

Neck pain: The cervical area of the spine is made up of an interdependent network of bones, discs, nerves, and muscles, all of which are subject to stress, injury, and

impairment. Because of this, neck pain is extremely common.

Symptoms of neck pain:

Symptoms of neck pain and the sensations you feel can help your doctor to diagnose the cause. Here are some symptoms.

  • Soreness in the shoulders, upper back or neck
  • Stiffness in the cervical region
  • Spasms
  • Radiating pain in the upper back, shoulders or neck
  • Headaches
  • Irritation that worsens with movement, specifically in the neck, shoulders or upper back
  • Fatigue

Common causes of neck pain

  • Muscle Strain or Ligament Sprain
    improperly lifting heavy objects or conducting repeated motions (such as sitting at a desk all day) can stress muscle tissue and ligaments, leading to pain that can often develop into a chronic condition.
  • Arthritis
    Arthritis causes inflammation, rigidity, and pain in joints. Cervical Spondylosis commonly called the “arthritis of the neck” occurs as the discs in the spine age and loses water content. This places more pressure on facet joints, which begin to degenerate.
  • Nerve Compression
    when a cervical disc is herniated, its soft, inner nucleus seeps out of a weak point in its hard outer casing. Pain in the neck and shoulders may result as weight is redistributed and nerves are compressed. Similar issues arise when a disc bulges or vertebral fractures.
  • Sudden Injury
    Unexpected damage to the cervical spine may be caused by falls, excessive motion, motor vehicle accidents, direct blows to the face or to the back or top of the head, sports-related accidents and comparable events.
  • Disease
    Certain illnesses can lead to neck and shoulder pain. Meningitis agitates the tissues around the brain and spinal cord and can become a life-threatening ailment. Flu tends to make the neck and the rest of the body ache constantly. Fibromyalgia may cause pain in the muscles and soft tissues, even in areas where there is no obvious injury or inflammation.
  • Cervical Spinal Stenosis
    Stenosis occurs when the spinal canal narrows, compressing the spinal cord and disrupting the organization of tissues, ligaments, and bone in the surrounding areas.
  • Tumor
    Even benign tumors can cause significant pain in the cervical area if they interfere with the proper functioning of muscles, ligaments, and bone. Tumors may also crowd sensitive nerves.
  • Referred Pain
    Sometimes, a health issue in one part of the body causes pain in another seemingly unrelated place. For example, a dental concern in the teeth or jaw or a medical issue in the heart can lead to significant neck pain.

Neck Pain Non-Operative treatment options:

There are a variety of medications that may be prescribed for neck pain, depending on the specific case.

Muscle relaxants decrease muscle irritation and spasm which can cause significant pain and loss of motion in the neck

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs {NSAIDs} specifically aim to decrease inflammation in soft tissues and joints. These medications are effective in decreasing pain as well.

Antidepressants may seem like a strange prescription for chronic neck pain, but studies have found that chronic neck pain actually creates chemical changes in the brain that are very similar to depression.

Fluoroscopic-guided nerve root block therapy

Physical therapy is a crucial non-operative treatment option for chronic neck pain and there are several modalities that are used.

Neck Pain Minimally Invasive Treatment Options

Problems with discs or vertebral fractures sometimes necessitate surgery. To lessen recovery time, scarring and trauma, our surgeons employ some of the most advanced minimally invasive surgical techniques available today. These procedures use extremely small incisions to safely and effectively reduce neck pain. Common minimally invasive surgeries include:

  • Fusions
    During a fusion procedure, one of our Board-certified surgeons will remove affected pieces of herniated discs and place spacers into empty disc space, which will cushion and strengthen the spine. Fusions also involve the application of a small bone-bridge between two harmed vertebrae to re-stabilize the upper back or neck.
  • Discectomies
    Discectomies are designed to remove the ruptured portions of a herniated disc while preserving its healthy segments. The hard outer wall of the disc is then treated to prevent further leakage.
  • Microdiscectomies
    Similar to a discectomy, surgeons performing Microdiscectomies extract portions of a herniated disc and secure the remaining disc on a minute scale. Often, surgeons use endoscopes (tiny cameras) to conduct Microdiscectomies.

Neck pain may seem unavoidable, but there are many ways to mitigate the severity and prevalence of your condition. Certain maladies can be quickly corrected, leading to a complete disappearance of pain.

If you are interested in finding more information to help your condition please find below the link to book an appointment.

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