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Spondylosis of the spine: symptoms, causes, treatment

Spondylosis – degenerative disease of the spine caused by pathological deposition of calcium salts in ligaments of the vertebral column. On radiographs, the disease is traced in the form bony "spikes" along the lateral parts of the vertebral bodies.

bone spikes in spondylosis

The Terms "degenerative" and "degenerate" was introduced in medicine to describe the pathogenetic links of the process, due to impaired supply of nutrients, as well as changes in vascularity of anatomical structures.

Spondylosis refers to a group of degenerative diseases, as occurs in case of lack of chemical compounds necessary for the normal development of the muscular-ligamentous apparatus of the spine and for healing of tissues after damage.


Degenerative spondylosis of the spine occurs predominantly in the elderly, although in recent years there is a tendency to its rejuvenation. After 50 years the spinal column is subjected to reverse involutional changes. The process is much faster compared to other diseases.

  • cardiovascular system
  • Violations of vascular permeability
  • Deposits in the wall of the artery cholesterol plaques
  • Multiple tearing of muscles and ligaments;
  • metabolic Diseases.

heart diseases Is disturbed microcirculation, so your spine feels a lack of oxygen. Against this background, even with minimal damage to their ligaments are formed of multiple gaps. Initially, the repair is due to the overgrowth of sections of damaged non-functional fibrous (connective) tissue.

If a process exists for a long time, in places of rupture of the deposited salts of calcium mineral (Ca). They are clearly seen on the radiograph. Osteophytes irritate the nerve receptors of the muscular-ligamentous apparatus, there is a "nagging" pain.

the Violation of vascular permeability Is accompanied by multiple small hemorrhages. If they appear in small capillaries of the muscular-ligamentous system of the spine, in tissues that leads to inflammation. Bone "spikes" occur with long-term existence of the process.

Similar changes occur in traumatic injuries of muscles and ligaments of the spine and atherosclerosis (formation of plaque in the walls of blood vessels).

In diseases of metabolism (e.g., gout) the ossification of the soft tissue may appear initially as a result of excess chemical compounds. When gout in ligaments uric acid accumulates, which leads to their damage. The deposition of calcium salts in such structures is intended to reduce the mobility of the affected region, but excessive accumulation can lead to serious pathological changes.

Usually there is spondylosis with degenerative disc disease at the same time – decrease the height of intervertebral discs. These diseases independently from each other, as the pathogenetic links of one lead to another, and Vice versa.

There are other reasons for the formation of the disease, but they are observed more rarely.

one of the signs of spondylosis - the presence of osteophytes


Spondylosis 1 degree does not have pronounced clinical symptoms. Minor injuries of the muscular-ligamentous apparatus when it is in rare cases, cause soreness. However, there are specific diseases depending on the localization.

Degenerative spondylosis in the cervical spine is dangerous not so much pain as the likelihood of impaired blood supply in the brain. In the transverse processes of the cervical vertebrae passes the spinal artery, supply blood to about 25% of brain structures. When the ossification of ligaments in the neck can cause compression of this vessel.

The First symptoms appear when the cervical spondylosis in stage 2 the level of the lower segments (C5, C6, C7). As a result of these changes formed the following changes:

  • Autonomic
  • Static;
  • Neurological.

let's talk About them below.

Proceeds Asymptomatic spondylosis of the thoracic spine 1 degree, because the mobility of the field "fixed" ribs. A small displacement of vertebras in this form will not prejudice the nerve fibers and serious compression of blood vessels.

If 2 stage pathology there may be pain along the ribs (intercostal neuralgia) and pain in the heart caused by damage to cardiac nerve.

More severe symptoms spondylosis is observed in the localization of bone osteophytes in the lumbar and sacral departments. In these areas there are major nerve plexus responsible for the functionality of the abdomen, pelvis and lower extremities. Because of this spondylosis 2 degrees in the lumbar spine forms:

  • Pain in your lower back;
  • Radiating pain in the legs and buttocks
  • Loss of sensation of the skin lowerlimbs
  • Loss of nerve reflexes (knee, Achilles).

Running all localizations spondylosis is accompanied with serious clinical manifestations due to secondary lesions of the internal organs on the background of pathological impulses from the nervous system.

the main symptoms of spondylosis is pain and loss of skin sensitivity

Neurological signs

To properly treat spondylosis, it is necessary to study characteristics of neurological symptoms that occur with it. They can be caused by ossification of the ligaments and intervertebral hernias. These pathogenetic links of the pathological process require different approaches to treatment.

Neurological symptoms in spondylosis:

  • ankylosing spondylitis – pain on the affected side while lifting up healthy feet. It appears due to the mobility of the damaged nerve fibers
  • Symptom Lasegue pain when picked up legs. Syndrome disappears when you straighten the leg at the knee joint. When lifting your legs up to an angle of 30 degrees increases pressure on the nerves, so the pain increases;
  • Neri – when bending the head observed lumboischialgia pain;
  • Bragard – Lasegue positive symptom of pain increases with dorsiflexion;
  • Wasserman – in extension of the feet occurs pain in the knee joint;
  • Matskevich – in position on the abdomen increases the pain when bending the leg at the knee joint.

Clinical syndromes

Degenerative spondylosis 1 and 2 degrees accompanied by autonomic syndromes. If the osteophyte is localized in the thoracic region:

  1. Increased heart rate
  2. Increased blood pressure
  3. colicky pain Occurs in the chest when the torso twists;
  4. difficulty breathing.

Autonomic disorders in the presence of the ossification of ligaments in the neck:

  • Headache or dizziness;
  • Spastic contractions of the shoulder muscles;
  • Inability to raise hands up;
  • Difficulty when bending the head forward and backward.

spondylosis of the cervical dangerous ossification of ligaments and difficulty in flexion/extension head

What spondylosis is observed at 1 and 2 degrees in the lumbar spine:

  • Aching pain in the back, the buttocks and lower extremities;
  • Frequent urination and disturbance of bowel movements;
  • Loss of sensation of the skin of the feet;
  • disruption of the blood supply in the area of the veins.

Static disease syndromes are manifested by impaired mobility of the upper and lower limbs in paraplegia and paralysis.

They arise due to the rectification or amplification of kifisou and lordosis of the spine on the background pathology. The following changes are compensatory to reduce depreciation pressure on the spine when walking and lifting:

  • Limitation of spine mobility;
  • Reduction of the amplitude of the flexion of the back;
  • Difficulty with maximum slopes to the sides;
  • Flag posture to compensate the pain (islamitische scoliosis).

Neurological manifestations consist in the loss and weakening of the reflexes of the body. So. spondylosis 3 degrees can lead to lower impulses in the area of the ligaments of the lower limbs. In this case the percussion neurological hammer on the kneecap, the knee rises up as normal.

Neurologist can determine serious damage to the spine at the mere sight of the patient. He shows trophic disorders:

  • Cyanosis of the skin of the back;
  • skin Peeling
  • lowering the temperature of skin;
  • Twitching eye when nerves.

To Cure neurological disorders is possible only after the elimination of the pathogenetic link, which led to their appearance.

Features compression syndrome

Radicular compression appears when the disease is not only due to the formation of bony osteophytes, but also due to the secondary formation of intervertebral hernia. If available, any attempt to make the rotation of the trunk or movement cause a sharp pain like sensations while passing through the body of electric current.

In cervical spondylosis the pain is evident in the upper limb and can extend to the ends 4 and 5 fingers. It is worse when sneezing or lifting weights.

At lumbar localization similar symptoms are observed by the lower limbs. On examination, the neurologist will detect the weakening of muscle strength on one or both sides.

x-ray of the cervical spine of the patient with spondylosis of the spineCervical spondylosis is manifested by more simplyme, not radikaliai (as with lumbar localization of the disease). Their characteristic feature is the presence of the primary lesion, while the irradiation corresponds exactly to the course of the nerve. When radicular symptoms diffuse pain syndrome, and the primary focus of its origin is difficult to detect even by a qualified neurologist.

Lumbar or cervicaldiskalgiya are secondary syndromes, formed on the background of intervertebral hernias. They differ from the primary simpally high intensity. Amid discharge appears the decrease in muscle strength and low mobility of the cervical musculature.

How to treat the disease

Spondylosis of the spine can be treated only after careful diagnosis of symptoms.

unfortunately, to get rid of pathology is impossible, but symptomatic therapy is able to restore human capacity for work and reduce the risk of disability.

  • Diagnosis spondylosis can be set only after the use of radiological methods:
  • Computer and magnetic resonance tomography
  • Radiography of the spine in two projections.

The Main stages of treatment of the spondylosis:

  • Analgesia
  • Normalization of tone of the skeletal muscles;
  • Removal of neurological disorders
  • Manual therapy
  • Complex rehabilitation;
  • Normalization of diet;
  • hygiene of the locomotor apparatus and the operation mode change and sleep.

Spondylosis 1 and 2 are equally expressed aching pain, which can be effectively treated with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs: Movalis, Ketorolac, ibuprofen, Nise, diclofenac.

As additional procedures for anesthesia reflexology and acupuncture.

The mainstay of treatment of the disease is physiotherapy. It is designed to normalize the state of the muscular frame back, which will maintain the correct position of the spine. The complex of exercises developed by doctors based on the individual characteristics of pathology.

Spondylosis with neurological disorders require treatment with medications to improve blood supply: Cavinton, trental, pentoxifylline. For normalization of muscle tone used muscle relaxants: mydocalm.

unfortunately, if a doctor put a diagnosis of spondylosis, treat it radically impossible. Comprehensive treatment allows to eliminate the main manifestations of the disease and to create comfortable conditions for human life. However, he should carefully follow all recommendations of the doctor. Otherwise it is difficult to prevent disability.