Spinal Arthritis or Spondylosis is a degenerative joint condition that causes slow deterioration of cartilage. Arthritis of the spine results in narrowed cartilage disks between the bones that make up your backbone. Without this cartilage cushioning, the joints (facets) between adjacent bones compress and become irregular, causing inflammation, pain, swelling and stiffness. Your body tries to compensate for this form of arthritis, but the repairs are often inadequate, resulting in growth of additional bone called bone spurs. 90% of people suffer from some form of arthritis of one area or another.
Cervical spondylosis or spinal arthritis is a common condition that results from degeneration (osteoarthritis) of the bones of the neck (cervical vertebrae). This can lead to increasing pain in the neck and arm, weakness, and changes in sensation.
Degenerative Disc Disease - As we age, the water and protein content of the body's cartilage changes. This change results in weaker, more fragile and thin cartilage. Because both the discs and the joints that stack the vertebrae (facet joints) are partly composed of cartilage, these areas are subject to wear and tear over time (degenerative changes). The gradual deterioration of the disc between the vertebrae is referred to as Degenerative Disc Disease.
What to do now if I have back pain?
Knowing what causes back problems is one of the best ways to avoid them. Educating yourself on the causes of spine arthritis can help you avoid activities that might result in back pain and ensure your spine stays healthy and strong for years to come.
Treatment options for my back pain.
Most people with spinal arthritis will likely be able to manage their symptoms non-surgically with the help of a conservative treatment regimen. Your doctor may suggest pain medication, hot-cold compresses, and gentle stretching, among others. If weeks or months of these treatments fail to offer you lasting pain relief contact us... We have a variety of minimally invasive procedures that offer a welcome alternative to the risks and lengthy recuperation of an open spine surgery. Request a free review of your MRI or CT scan today.
Alternative treatment of spinal arthritis
Alternative conservative treatments are wide-ranging including massage, stretching, and therapy modalities among many. Before choosing your options it is good to work with your doctor in developing a treatment plan.
- Conservative – Ideal for mild cases of spinal arthritis, conservative treatments can include hot therapy, cold therapy, low-impact exercises like swimming and walking, over-the-counter pain medication, hydrotherapy, or braces.
- Holistic types of treatments focus on balancing the body’s overall health, both physical and psychological. Examples include yoga, massage, acupuncture, acupressure, herbal medicine, biofeedback, and chiropractic work.
- Pain Management – These techniques offer more targeted pain relief for individuals suffering from moderate to severe spinal arthritis. In most cases, it’s best to get a referral for a pain management specialist from your primary care physician. Treatments might include prescription medication, TENS treatment, pain patches, epidural steroid injections, or ultrasound therapy.
If weeks or months of the above non-operative treatment methods do not help you to achieve lasting relief from arthritis pain, your doctor may suggest that you consider surgery. Before committing to any procedure, gather all of the facts about minimally invasive outpatient alternatives. For more information, contact us.