Symptoms, diagnosis, treatment and exercises in osteoarthritis of the cervical spine
neck Pain can talk about serious disease, the name of which is osteoarthritis of the cervical spine, the symptoms of the disease at the initial stage of development, mostly inconspicuous. Often they are compared to the fatigue syndrome.
However, if left untreated arthrosis of the spine, this can lead to disturbances in the upper and lower extremities and limitation of motion of the head. TOOOhe Cervical spine consists of 7 vertebrae that form the joint between the skull and the rib cage. So, what are the causes of degeneration of the spine, how to recognize and prevent them?
Osteoarthritis of the cervical spine – causes
The Causes of osteoarthritis of the cervical spine can be quite prosaic – too high pillow to sleep, daily overload or trauma to the neck. Also, it is a disease that is often accompanied by a violation of posture (scoliosis, flat feet).
A Major factor in the occurrence of degenerative changes in the cervical spine are:
- inappropriate static (at rest) and dynamic loads (associated with movement) that arise due to incorrect settings of the entire spine (poor posture);
- a wrong position during long periods of sitting
- improper height of the pillow on which you rest at night (if it is too high, it adversely affects the cervical spine);
- presence of other diseases of the musculoskeletal system during growth: scoliosis (i.e., lateral curvature of the spine) and flat feet;
- prolonged static loads: for example, office work in front of the computer;
- professional sports (jumping, running);
- negative impact of past injuries, numerous minor injuries, which can cause disease (the seat belts do not protect the cervical spine in the course of traffic accidents);
- of hormonal disorders and metabolism.
The Most common symptoms of dysfunction of the cervical spine:
- neck pain with the transition in the limbs (most often, due to pressure on nerve roots C5-C6 or C6-C7);
- pain in the neck back to the forehead;
- disorders of sensation in the limbs – sometimes paralysis of muscles upper limbs;
- paroxysmal headaches, dizziness, balance disorders, tinnitus, nystagmus, (pressure in the arteries of the spine and the change of brain blood supply) are common symptoms, both in the morning and evening;
- neuralgia and muscle tics;
- visual disturbances, blurring, scotoma in front of the eyes, tremors of the eyeballs;
- sometimes swallowing disorders (manifestation of a symptom associated with depression of the structures of the esophagus or a dysfunction of the innervation);
- disorders of the heart (this symptom occurs when compression of the artery in the neck).
Treatment and rehabilitation of patients
To date, vertebral arthrosis of the cervical spine is treatable with drug therapy: nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs with analgesic effect. Treatment with muscle relaxants is carried out only in justified cases, in the acute stage and in small doses (drugs, relaxing the muscles). Used rehabilitation – this second component of treatment, however, is based on conservative therapy.
If initially the patient experiences only discomfort in the cervical spine, it is necessary to do the therapeutic massage, relaxing overly tense muscles. Is useful and gymnastics, relaxing the cervical vertebrae and shoulder girdle, providing a massaging effect and prevent repeated strain.
The longer the character of development changes in the cervical spine, the harder it gets the treatment to cure their disease. However, the corresponding impacts and rehabilitation can dramatically decrease.
The most used procedures with osteoarthritis of the neck, include:
- massage the muscles of the neck, the nape, the shoulders and the area between the shoulder blades – eliminates excessive muscle tension;
- exercises to relax the muscles of the neck and shoulder;
- strengthening exercises targeted at the muscle groups of the neck and shoulders.
Physiotherapy treatment for degeneration of cervical vertebrae includes:
- Warming heat lamp solljuks – can be used only when you are confident that you, currently, in this area there is no inflammatory process. If you are dealing with acute inflammation, use warming uplamp with a blue filter, having antipyretic and anti-inflammatory effect.
- Magnetic therapy.
- Local cryotherapy is a treatment that acts as an anaesthetic and anti-inflammatory agent.
- Procedure shock waves to trigger points.
- iontophoresis with the use of drugs painkillers and anti-inflammatory action.
In justified cases related to acute pain in the neck because of the strong muscle tension (muscle protection), sometimes used for immobilization of the cervical collar. However, it should not abuse its use. The collar should only be used to stabilize and relieve acute pain (not to forget about strengthening exercises).
It Should be borne in mind that better resist disease than to treat it.
It is Extremely important to prevent degeneration of the cervical spine, to take the correct position when sitting (use a chair with armrests, knees and hips should be bent at an angle of 90 degrees, a pillow under cut the lumbar region or special profiling the chairs are all the result allows you to take the correct position of the spine in the thoracic and cervical spine);
Suitable height and distance of computer monitor at work. The monitor is best set in the line of sight (directly in front of the head), not too high and not too low.
Take breaks during prolonged sitting in front of the monitor, and make this time a couple of exercises, unloading and relaxing the neck and shoulder region.
Provide a special roller for the neck, which relieves the muscles, supports the head during travel, care for the required height of the head restraint seat to protect the neck.
The Right pillow for sleeping, best orthopedic pillow, with relevant content, which in the initial period of application, generally not convenient for patients. However, it should be remembered that the spine requires a little time to get used to this pillow, so it should not be too quick to abandon it.
Correct posture during reading: the book should be located on a hill at an angle, to care of the neck should not be too lean.
Periodic monitoring of visual acuity, as an improper correction causes an incorrect position of the neck forward.
Complete cure of osteoarthritis, even at a very early stage, it is not possible, however, specialized therapy can slow the progression of the disease.
The Treatment may consist, also, in relieving the symptoms of a disease due to the use of drugs with anti-inflammatory action.
Physical exercises are performed under professional guidance, help to relax the muscles and relieve the cervical vertebrae. It is recommended and application of massage, which relieves excessive pressure to the joints of the spine.