BLOG

Commonwealth Orthopaedics: Pinched Nerves in the Neck

07.21.2013 / Blog Posts Health and Wellness

AP Photo

Cervical radiculopathy is a disorder where a nerve in the neck is pinched. It manifests itself as pain radiating from the neck into the shoulder blade and typically down the affected arm. The exact location and pattern of pain varies depending on which nerve is being pinched. There may also be associated numbness, tingling in the arm and into the finger tips. Depending on the nerve being pinched and the severity of nerve dysfunction, there may also be associated weakness of the arm.

What Causes Cervical Radiculopathy? It is typically a herniated disc in the neck, a bone spur that is compressing the nerve, or degenerative changes that cause stenosis (or tightening) of the spinal canal.

How is it Diagnosed?  The diagnosis of cervical radiculopathy is typically made with a thorough history and physical examination paying special attention to a neurologic exam. An MRI is typically needed to know exactly what is pinching the nerve and to confirm the diagnosis.

How is it Treated?  Acute cervical radiculopathy generally has a self-limited clinical course with 75% rate of spontaneous improvement. Most often it can resolve with activity modification, physical therapy, anti-inflammatory medications and possibly epidural steroid injections. For the 10-25% that do not respond to conservative care, surgery is indicated to take the pressure off of the nerve. These surgeries typically have greater than 95% success rates and fairly rapid recovery.

By:  B. Thomas Mazahery, MD; Commonwealth Orthopaedics

  

For more information on other spine related problems visit our blog:  http://blog.c-o-r.com/category/spine/

Commonwealth Orthopaedics has teamed up with the Redskins as a new health and wellness partner. Click here for more information.

comments powered by Disqus

It's our turn.

Join the 82082 members

Refer a friend now

WOW is better with friends. So get yours to join. And share every Burgundy and Gold moment.

* required field

Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun Mon
1 2 3 4 5
6 7 8 9 10 11
July 12, 2014 10:00 AM Boot Camp at FedExField
12
13 14 15 16 17 18
July 19, 2014 07:00 AM Give Blood at Redskins Park!
July 19, 2014 10:00 AM Volunteer with WOW and Women Giving Back
19
20 21 22 23
July 24, 2014 WOW VIP Tent at Redskins Training Camp
July 24, 2014 06:30 PM Kickoff Reception at the Science Museum!
24
25 26
27 28 29 30 31 1 2