28 Nov Overview of Neck Pain Treatment in Gilbert AZ
Neck pain is a frequently presenting symptom in the United States. The most common reason for neck pain is muscle strain, which is usually self-limited and resolves over time. Neck pain may commonly be referred from headaches, jaw or tooth problems, or shoulder muscle tension and injuries.
Cervical Spondylosis is Osteoarthritis of the cervical spine. This condition can present with neck pain upon movement (axial neck pain), sensory or motor nerve impairment in the upper extremities, or muscle ache.
Cervical Radiculopathy refers to compression of a spinal nerve in the neck. Compression of a spinal nerve can lead to arm numbness, tingling, pain, or muscle weakness. Patients experiencing a cervical radiculopathy commonly note one-sided neck pain that radiates into the arm along a specific area supplied by that nerve.
Cervical osteoarthritis and disc herniation are common causes. It is unusual for a patient affected by a cervical radiculopathy to progress to a myelopathy.
Cervical Myelopathy refers to neurologic dysfunction because of spinal cord compression.
As the nerve bundles supplying distant muscle groups run through the neck, they are susceptible to cord compression. A prominent symptom in Cervical Myelopathy is changes in your gait. You may feel unsteady, or experience weakness in the hands and forearms. Pain, however, is uncommon. This condition usually has a slow progression as a nerve becomes further affected. In this condition, surgery is the preferred treatment as it aims to remove the physical pressure on the spinal nerves.
Imaging studies are generally not needed for acute neck pain unless certain features are present. Findings that would prompt sooner imaging include progressive neurologic deficit or disabling symptoms, history of spinal fractures, osteopenia, or osteoporosis; unexplained fever or weight loss, history of cancer, IV drug use, or recent trauma. X-Rays or Magnetic Resonance Imaging are often performed.
Treatment for neck pain varies depending on the cause, and whether it is acute or chronic. Most patients with neck pain due to muscle strain improve within 2 to 4 weeks by symptomatic pain relief, activity restriction, ice, and rest. Quality Physical Therapy can be beneficial.
Chiropractic treatment and therapy sessions can be a helpful addition as you recover from an injury. Continuing to maintain a level of physical activity is important in a healthy recovery. Surgical intervention is reserved for a mechanically reversible cause in the setting of neurologic impairment, such as a disc protrusion, spinal stenosis and cord compression.