Cervical Osteochondrosis: Generalized and Localized Types

Definition

Cervical osteochondrosis is the result of changes that occur in the intervertebral discs in the cervical spine. This in the upper area of the spine, located in the back of the neck. Intervertebral discs are located between each vertebrae or back bone of the spine. They provide cushioning for the vertebrae, and help support the spinal column. The changes that occur with cervical osteochondrosis in the discs also cause changes in the vertebrae. This can result in painful symptoms due to pressure on the nerve roots. 

The pathological changes in cervical osteochondrosis have an effect on the intervertebral discs, the vertebrae, and on the tissues that surround the upper region of the spine. Because the bones in the cervical spine are less stable than the vertebrae in the middle and lower spine, they can easily shift and become misaligned or displaced.  

Very often, people have cervical osteochondrosis, but they are not aware of the condition because it does not cause symptoms. In other cases, cervical osteochondrosis symptoms become severe. This is because narrowing occurs in the spinal canals and there isn't enough space for the vertebral artery, the spinal cord and its nerves to pass through on their way to the brain. If any of these become irritated, pinched or compressed, symptoms can develop.  Know more about cervical osteochondrosis symptoms...

Cervical osteochondrosis is a common disorder. The prevalence of osteochondrosis worldwide is estimated at about 80% and the incidence of the disease is increasing. Know more about cervical osteoochondrosis prevalence...

Cervical osteochondrosis treatment depends on the severity of the symptoms. Goals of treatment focus on pain control, the prevention of further injury to the spinal cord and nerves, and helping patients continue their normal daily activities and enjoy their lives. More about cervical osteochondrosis treatment...

If you have symptoms that are consistent with a diagnosis of cervical osteochondrosis, a physical examination will be needed. When your physician exams you, your neck will be checked for the location and severity of your symptoms and your neck movement and mobility will also be evaluated. Your muscle strength and reflexes, and your gait and balance will also be checked. Read more about cervical osteochondrosis diagnostic procedures