Spondylosis: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

by Administrator 24. April 2017 10:05

Spondylosis or osteoarthritis of spine denotes a medical condition which leads to the degeneration of the spine. It affects the vertebrae and the discs that lie between them. Spondylosis can be cervical (affects the neck), lumbar (affects the back) and thoracic (affects the middle back). Although spondylosis affects aged people more, it can be observed in others as well irrespective of age and gender. The process of ageing leads to wear and tear of the vertebrae and the fluid present in the intervertebral disc tends to dry up. The joint spaces shrink and the cartilage gets damaged. This may or may not be degenerative but affects the quality of life massively.

Causes

  • Ageing- natural wear and tear of cartilage leads to rubbing of vertebrae against each other and mobility is hampered
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Compression of spinal root or spinal stenosis
  • Growth of bone spurs  (osteophytes) that impinge on the spinal canal and soft tissue structures
  • A direct fall or injury to the spine
  • Spinal osteoarthritis
  • Herniated disc
  • Narrowing of the spinal canal as the ligaments thicken and start encroaching on it
  • Slip disc
  • Overuse injuries and damage
  • Genetics 
  • Being overweight
  • Poor postural habits, smoking and lack of physical activity

Symptoms

  • Limited range of motion remains in the neck and the back
  • Pain which may be constant or activity related
  • Pain may radiate upwards into the shoulder or arms and downwards into the legs and hips
  • Stiffness
  • Crepitus- a grinding feeling in the spine
  • Nausea
  • Feeling of imbalanced body
  • Numbness or tingling sensation
  • Muscle spasms
    Spine Surgeon Allen
  • Bladder continence
  • Headaches
  • Abnormal reflexes
  • Change in gait
  • Inability to grasp objects

Diagnosis

  • Detailed physical examination to assess the range of motion by a spine surgeon
  • Details of the medical and family history are taken down
  • Cervical Compression test- pressure is applied manually on the head and the neck is flexed
  • Reflexes and body coordination is assessed
  • Electromyogram to test nerve conduction
  • MRI and CT scan
  • X-ray imaging to study changes in bone structure

Treatment

  • Mechanical traction may help to improve joint spaces and alleviates pain
  • Pain killers and anti inflammatory medicines are prescribed byt the doctor
  • Use of a neck collar for some time may be prescribed
  • Physical therapy helps ease back pain and improves spinal strength and stability
  • Maintaining good posture is necessary
  • Apply heat pads or ice packs at regular intervals
  • Corticosteroids may be injected into the affected part
  • Decompressive therapies may be suggested and may be carried out through manual adjustment of the spine
  • Prescription of muscle relaxants
  • Spine surgery may be carried out to remove bone spurs and damaged ligaments
  • Herniated discs and damaged vertebrae may be removed using surgery in some cases

Visit Dr. Burg for complete treatment of Spondylosis. To  To request an appointment with the spine surgeon, call at (972) 985 - 1072.

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