Spondylosis refers to the degenerative changes that occur in the spine. It is also known as spinal osteoarthritis and can be quite painful. The structural alterations may reduce the amount of space between vertebral bodies and can affect the normal movement of the joints. The condition may worsen as a person grows older and can affect neck, thoracic, lumbar or lumbosacral region of spines. Out of all this, lumbar and cervical spondylosis are the most common.
What is cervical spondylosis?
Cervical spondylosis causes
The wear and tear of bones and protective cartilage in the neck can lead to cervical spondylosis. Some of the spinal spondylosis causes includes:
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Symptoms of cervical spondylosis
Some common cervical spondylosis symptoms are:
Pain around the shoulder or arm . The intensity of pain increases while sitting, standing, coughing sneezing etc.
Numbness in the shoulders and arms
Diagnosis involves the testing for movement and checking the affected nerves, bones and muscles. It includes:
Physical exam include testing of reflexes, checking for muscle weakness and the motion of neck.
X-rays for bone spurs and other abnormalities.
Electromyogram to check whether the nerves are functioning normally.
Cervical Spondylosis treatment lowers the risk of permanent damage and provide pain relief which helps to lead a normal life.
Physical therapy involves the stretching of neck and shoulder muscles and helps to relieve pain.
ome medications can help treat the condition . These include:
muscle relaxants cyclobenzaprine to treat muscle spasms
hydrocodone for pain relief
anti-epileptic drugs, such as gabapentin
nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as diclofenac to reduce inflammation
Cervical spondylosis surgery
If the condition is severe and others treatments prove ineffective then only the doctor recommends for cervical spondylosis surgery.
Doing few things at home can help if the condition is mild:
Taking OTC pain reliever such as acetaminophen or an NSAID
Using a heating pad or a cold pack
Soft neck brace for temporary relief.
What Types of Doctors Treat Spondylosis?
There are physicians of different specialties such as general practitioners, rheumatologists, neurologists, neurosurgeons, orthopedists and pain-management specialists who can treat spondylosis. In addition, physical therapists, massage therapists, and chiropractors can also treat it.