Few modern people have not heard of osteochondrosis. Most of them have repeatedly experienced the symptoms of this ailment. The wide spread of the disease involves prolonged sitting at a computer, passive lifestyle, poor diet, etc. osteochondrosis of the cervical spine is manifested by pain, muscle weakness, limitation of mobility and a range of other symptoms.
Do not ignore the signs of osteochondrosis, because the sooner you start treatment, the faster you get rid of the disease. In the initial stages conservative treatment: medications, physical therapy, physical therapy, massage, etc. At occurrence of complications and destruction of bone and cartilage structure is assigned to the operation.
What it is
Osteochondrosis neck is a pathology which is found only in humans. Animals do not suffer from it. This is due to the vertical arrangement of the spine. In this position, the vertebrae squeeze each other, which leads to the fact that the intervertebral discs are gradually destroyed.
The cervical consists of 7 vertebrae, which are separated from each other by discs. The spine is mobile enough, which is why it is one of the most vulnerable sections of the spine. The weakest link in the cervical spine is the intervertebral disc, which primarily reflected degenerative changes.
The prevalence of cervical degenerative disc disease explained by the weak muscular corset around the neck area. In addition, this site hosts the vertebrae are small in size, they have different structures and are too tight to each other. That is why even a small load on the neck may trigger their displacement and also compression of blood vessels and nerve branches. With the pinching of the vertebral artery, which is placed inside the spine in this area, there are dangerous complications.
Osteochondrosis of the cervical spine (SHOP) facing the protrusion (displacement of the nucleus pulposus without damaging the outer shell), and herniated disc. These structures compress the nerve bundles, vessels.
Due to degenerative changes in the intervertebral disks increases the likelihood of bone spurs (osteophytes) in the areas of the joints of the vertebrae. Because of this narrowed spinal canal and compressed the neurovascular education.
Help. In medical statistics from the cervical osteochondrosis often affects people over the age of 35. Although there is now a rejuvenation of the disease, which often develops in patients of 20 years. This is due to the predominantly sedentary lifestyle and poor diet.
Doctors have identified 4 stages of pathology:
- Stage 1 – begins to break down the cartilage padding between the vertebrae. At this stage the disease has erased the symptoms. Unfortunately, patients do not notice them.
- Stage 2 – pressure vertebral disk height is reduced, the integrity of its outer shell is broken. At this stage may manifest protrusion. There is pain, limited mobility of the neck, possible violation of the sensitivity of the person.
- 3 degree – protrusion transformirovalsya in herniation that compresses the blood vessels and muscles. In addition to pain syndrome there is pain in the head, dizziness.
- Degree 4 – the formation of osteophytes to stabilize the vertebrae, but pinch the nerve fibers. The pain does not disappear, there is stiffness, damaged neighboring vertebrae, there are neurological symptoms.
It is important to start treatment for 1 – 2 stages to avoid serious complications that can be corrected only surgically.
Osteochondrosis of the SHOP is a complex and lengthy process that may occur under the influence of many negative factors.
For example, the elderly, the disease is associated with age-related changes of the body. Then degenerative changes occur as a result of violation of local blood circulation, metabolism, immune system weakening.
However, doctors have identified the main causes of cervical degenerative disc disease:
- Incorrect posture.
- Curvature of the spine.
- Injuries of the cervical segment.
- The excessive weight.
- Grueling physical work.
- Prolonged sitting at the computer.
- A passive lifestyle.
- Violation of metabolic processes.
- Common hypothermia of the neck.
- Improper organization of the bed (too soft mattress and high pillow).
- Frequent stress, chronic fatigue.
- Congenital abnormalities of the structure of the SHOP.
- Autoimmune diseases that cause degeneration of cartilage.
- Features parts of the body, for example, very long or short neck.
Under the influence of these factors begin to collapse the intervertebral structure, bone tissue, damaged nerve bundles, blood vessels.
The clinical picture of osteochondrosis of the cervical spine (OSOP) varied. For this reason, patients find it hard to understand what happens to them. Early manifestations of the disease are blamed on fatigue. And after the appearance of symptoms rush to the doctor, but in this case, irreversible changes are already present and restore the structure of the cervical will not succeed.
The main symptoms of osteochondrosis of the cervical spine:
- Soreness at the site of the neck, shoulders.
- The weakening of the muscles surrounding the affected segment of the spine.
- Excessive secretion of sweat.
- Violation of the sensitivity of the upper limbs.
- Disorders of coordination of movements.
- Cephalalgia (headache).
- Vertigo (dizziness).
- Disorders of hearing, vision.
- Jumps in blood pressure, etc.
The nature of the headache with osteochondrosis of the highlights: paroxysmal, persistent, throbbing, dull. This symptom manifested due to spasm of cerebral vessels, compression of nerve fibers of the cervical, increase in intracranial pressure.
When OSHOP pain does not always appear at the site of the cervical segment, it may spread to the shoulders and arms. The discomfort may occur after sleep, sudden movements, tension of the neck, for example, when you cough or sneeze.
Osteochondrosis SHOP pressure surges are observed, depending on the time of day, constant hypertension uncharacteristic pathology. Usually when the pressure experience the following symptoms: cephalalgia, pain in hands, numbness in the cervical area. Pressure drops are often observed after nerve or muscle tension, prolonged stay in an uncomfortable position.
Syndromes of cervical osteochondrosis
When OSOP there are several syndromes (typical of the state, which are accompanied by characteristic symptoms). Their manifestation depends on which nerve branches and blood vessels are damaged.
Syndromes of cervical degenerative disc disease:
- The vertebral artery arises as a result of compression or irritation of the artery that feeds the brain. Then the patient is suffering from disorders of hearing, vision, dizziness, pressure, headaches etc.
- Cardiac – develops when compression of the nerve bundles that Innervate the diaphragm or pectoral muscle. Then there is burning pain in the chest, shortness of breath, weakness, heart palpitation.
- Hypertension – caused by compression of the veins, causing impaired outflow of blood from the head. Then, increased intracranial pressure, the patient is suffering from cephalgia, nausea, vomiting.
- Cervical migraine – caused due to compression of the nerves that surround the vertebral artery. Then there migrenepodobna excruciating pain in the neck. The attack lasted about 10 hours and is often accompanied by eruption of vomit.
- The spine is the most common symptom in ASAP. It is caused by compression of one of the nerve fibers in vertebrae of the cervical segment. In violation of the conductivity of 1 – 2 spine of cervical vertebra sensitivity is disturbed or there is a pain in the neck. Damage 3 pairs numb tongue, the area behind the ears, it's hard to chew food. Inflammation 4 pair of roots is accompanied by pain in the collarbone, hiccups, difficulty swallowing. If the violation of conductivity 5 – 8 pairs of nerve fibers, the patient is difficult to move the hands.
Help. Often, osteochondrosis of the cervical spine is manifested by several symptoms, then diagnosis is difficult. Therefore it is not necessary to understand yourself, it is better to consult the experts.
If you don't know what to do if I see suspicious symptoms, it is better to consult your physician. If necessary, your doctor will refer you to the orthopedist, spine, a neurologist.
With the diagnostic finding, the following instrumental examinations:
- The x-rays.
- Computer or magnetic-resonant tomography.
All the above studies provide some information about the cervical spine. For example, x-ray, CT, MRI are used to detect pathological changes in the spine structure. Electromyography allows to assess the condition of the nerve fibers.
Using radiography, which is held in different projections, it is possible to detect the accumulation of calcium salts, reducing the height of the cartilage pads between the vertebrae, the deformation of the SHOP, the presence of bone spurs, etc.
Therapy ASAP must be comprehensive. The decision on the selection of methods is made by the doctor depending on the stage of the disease, the severity of symptoms.
Treatment of degenerative disc disease of the cervical spine is long and complex. Complete cure of the pathology is unlikely, especially if we are talking about a patient of advanced age. However, to stop the degenerative disorders in the cervical segment, it is possible at any stage.
In the early stages of the disease apply conservative methods: medicines, physiotherapy, physiotherapy, massage, orthopedic appliances. Most of the above methods can be applied at home.
3 – 4 stage, which is accompanied by destruction of not only cartilage, but also of the vertebral body, may need surgical intervention.
To get rid of pain, inflammation, relax tense muscles, improve the condition of cartilage tissue will help the following medications:
- Painkillers. With strong pain can help themselves by taking a pill of metamizol sodium. For this purpose, used NSAIDs, which allow to cope not only with pain and inflammation.
- Steroids stop the inflammation and pain. For this purpose, use drugs based on hormones in the form of tablets or ointments.
- Muscle relaxants help to relax spasms of the muscles around the damaged area. For this purpose, use solutions for parenteral administration on the basis of benzimidazole. They normalize muscle tone and reduce pain.
- Antispasmodics help to fight pain and muscle spasms.
- Vitamins accelerate recovery of the nervous system. For this purpose, take drugs on the basis of group elements b, A, C, D, and E. Quite effective vitamin-mineral complexes.
Help. If the pain is very strong, and oral analgesics are not helping, then your doctor may prescribe procaine blockade. Injections with the use of anesthetic or steroid solutions are put directly into the nidus. This can only be done by an experienced specialist.
In the complex therapy use creams, gels, ointments with anti-inflammatory, warming, analgesic effect.
To alleviate the condition of patients, to improve their physical form, prescribe physiotherapy. Exercises help to strengthen the muscles around the neck, improve metabolic processes, accelerate blood circulation, ease the strain on a weakened spine.
Especially popular with ASHOP gymnastics, it is usually conducted in the gym using special equipment. However, if you want to train at home.
Complex physical therapy in cervical osteochondrosis:
- Smoothly tilt your head to shoulder units, lock onto for 30 seconds, then repeat movement on the other side.
- Tilt your head forward, trying to touch chin to your chest, then lift it up and slightly forward.
- Put your head back a little, turn to the right and then the left shoulder.
- Press right hand left shoulder, raise your elbow a bit. Then turn your head to the right, hold, feeling the tension of muscles.
- This exercise is performed like the third, only during the rotation of the head raise your hands over your head and stepside them.
- Hands on his knees, spread them to the side, trying to connect the blades, at the same time understand the chin up. So you have worked for and thoracic.
- Stand up, put your hands down, pull the neck forward, trying to touch chin to shoulder.
Before classes to do a joint warm up and take a shower to relax muscles. After you perform the stretch.
To treat low back pain neck using physical therapy:
- Laser therapy.
- Electrophoresis with drugs, etc.
Magnetic therapy relieves inflammation and pain. UHF and laser treatment speeds up the metabolism in the affected area, helps to eliminate puffiness. Through electrophoresis, the drugs penetrate into the center of inflammation through the skin, where they exert their action.
Massage normalizes muscle tone, improves blood flow to damaged areas, improves trophic tissues. After completing the course, which usually consists of 10 procedures stops the progression of degenerative processes in the cervical spine.
At home you can use the Tibetan applicator is a device made of plastic with lots of thorns. The device needs to go or apply it to the affected area. The applicator helps to ease the soreness, relaxes muscles, improves blood circulation and physical activity.
Collar Trench used for pain. This orthopedic device locks the neck in the correct position, reduces the load on the vertebrae, and relieves pain.
In the complex treatment of the patient will be able to get rid of degenerative disc disease neck forever. However, it is possible, if the disease is identified at stage 1. In other cases, comprehensive measures will help to stop the progression of the disease.
Chondrosis of the cervical
Many people believe that the chondrosis and osteochondrosis is one disease. However, this view is mistaken. The first disease affect only the cartilage of the vertebral spacer and the second degenerative changes of the bone tissue. That is, chondrosis is the first stage of osteoarthritis.
Chondrosis of the cervical develops when disturbed metabolism of the intervertebral disc. Then, collagen fibers are replaced by useless fibrous tissue, hyaline cartilage obyzvestvleniya, becomes less elastic. Its height decreases, which disrupted the function of the vertebrae.
Causes of chondrosis and osteoarthritis are no different.
Cervical chondrosis has the following features:
- Rapid fatigue of the muscles surrounding the SHOP.
- Incorrect posture.
- Occasional discomfort or mild pain in the affected area.
- The limited mobility of the neck.
As a rule, patients do not notice symptoms chondrosis. Identify the disease by chance during an x-ray or MRI.
TREATMENT OF CHONDROSIS
Treatment plan chondrosis neck is a little different from the tactics of treatment of degenerative disc disease. The first disease doctors prescribe NSAIDs and hondroprotektory. In addition, the patient should avoid excessive physical activity or prolonged sitting. It is recommended to perform physiotherapy, eat right, give up bad habits.
Additional therapies include massage, manual therapy. Also shown are physiotherapy, for example, electrophoresis, ultraviolet irradiation, amplipulse, diadynamic therapy, balneotherapy, mud treatment. Its effectiveness in the treatment of chondrosis proved acupuncture (acupuncture).
In most cases, patients can get rid of the symptoms of cervical degenerative disc disease for some time, and then the disease returned. Usually this is due to the fact that the patient later seeks medical assistance or is not in compliance with the recommendations of the doctor during treatment. But there are those who managed to cure ASAP and not to deal with its symptoms.
"I was diagnosed osteochondrosis of the neck in 2 stages. Doctors prescribed anti-inflammatory pills and injections. After the pain is gone, started going to massage, doing special exercises, used the ointment. After the course of treatment I felt significant relief. However, after 3 months the pain in the neck appeared again. Therefore, the policy had to start over again."
"I have lived a long time with the cervical osteochondrosis. Periodically visit a chiropractor sets the spine. But most of all I helps therapeutic exercise. The doctor told me some very effective exercises of a special complex that I try to do every day. But as soon as miss a few classes, again there is pain".
"Cervical degenerative disc disease at early stage is quite treatable. I have so happened. At first the doctors prescribed anti-inflammatory therapy, which ease the pain and inflammation. Then treatment is supplemented by exercises, massage, acupuncture. In addition, I visited the pool, started to take vitamins, eat right. To forget the pain forever, I had to completely change my life. No special exercises not a day goes by, however, plus the fact that I have no pain, and the physical form improved. I no longer feel back pain and continue to lead a healthy lifestyle."
Osteochondrosis of the cervical spine is an insidious disease that manifests a variety of symptoms. Not always the patient understands what is really happening to him. And with the appearance of severe pain rushes to the doctor, but this symptom indicates the presence of degenerative changes in the cervical segment. In this case, to restore the state of the spine will fail. Then it is a treatment that helps stop the progression of the disease and to avoid serious consequences. Therapy of osteoarthritis is a complex and lengthy process that requires patience, discipline. After eliminating pain and inflammation of the patient must regularly perform physical therapy, massage, physiotherapy, apply orthopedic appliances, eat right, give up bad habits. It is important to lead a healthy lifestyle, adhere to moderate physical activity, weight control, to monitor the posture. Only in this case you can reverse the disease and live a full life.