Cervical Disc Herniation
Cervical disc herniation is a spinal condition that causes pain in the neck, shoulders, and arms. Oftentimes, it’s referred to as a pinched nerve, herniated disc, or ruptured disc.Itoriginates in the upper spine, also known as the cervical spine. The cervical spine supports the weight and movement of the head and consists of seven different vertebrae separated by intervertebral discs. Each disc is composed of an annulus and a soft nucleus at the center that work together to absorb shock and distribute pressure evenly. They also serve to separate the vertebrae.
Cervical disc herniation occurs when a disc’s annulus tears, which can result in the nucleus separating from the centerofthe disc. When this happens, the disc may lose its ability to separate vertebrae, which can irritate the spinal nerves and cause discomfort or numbness in the neck or arms.
What Causes Cervical Disc Herniation?
Typically, normal everyday wear and tear causes cervical disc herniation, butit can also be caused by an injury, like a sudden intense twist or from a car accident, trauma, or heavy lifting.It is quite common in individuals in their 30s and 40s.
Symptoms of Cervical Disc Herniation
There are many symptoms associated with cervical disc herniation, including pain in the neck, shoulder, and/or arms. Other symptoms may include:
• Pain or a burning sensation running from the neck to one or both arms
• Shoulder pain
• Pain while turning the head
• Difficult sleeping due to pain
• Tingling, weakness, or numbness in one or both arms
• Difficulty using arms or hands
Diagnosing and Treating Cervical Disc Herniation
When you visit Central NJ Spine, one of our experienced doctors will perform a physical examination to help determine the cause of any symptoms. Your medical history and any previous test results will also be discussed, and if any other tests are needed, they will be ordered. Once the doctor determines a diagnosis, treatment options will be discussed. When it comes to cervical disc herniation, the treatment options usually include physical therapy, medications, and modifying activity levels. In severe cases, surgery options, like an anterior cervical discectomy and fusion or a cervical disc replacement, mightbe considered.
Do you think you might have a cervical disc herniation? Schedule a consultation with one of our doctors today. Call our office at 201-371-6004.