A cervical disc is a shock-absorbing, soft pad that lies between vertebrae in the cervical spine (the neck). The cervical spine is comprised of six total cervical discs. With the natural wear and tear that accompanies aging, a cervical disc may begin to degenerate, with some patients not even experiencing any symptoms.Cervical discs support the neck’s vertebral bones while also enabling flexibility for head movements. Sitting between adjacent cervical vertebrae stacked atop each other, each cervical disc acts as a shock absorber to help the cervical spine handle various stresses and loads.Cervical degenerative disc disease is a common cause of neck pain and radiating arm pain. It develops when one or more of the cushioning discs in the cervical spine starts to break down due to wear and tear.A bulging disc in your neck may be relatively painless. Or it can cause severe pain in your neck, as well as your shoulders, chest, and arms. It may also cause numbness or weakness in your arms or fingers. Sometimes, this pain and numbness may even cause you to think that you’re having a heart attack.
What is cervical disc ?
The cervical disks
are the cushions that lie between the cervical vertebrae
. They act as shock absorbers to allow your neck to move freely. Your cervical spine also forms a protective tunnel for the upper part of your spinal cord to pass through.Symptoms of c5-c6 disc herniation can include numbness, tingling, burning, weakness, problems with vision, and more.
What is a cervical herniated disc ?
Cervical discs are the cushions between the vertebrae in the upper back and neck. Herniation of the disc occurs when the gelatinous inner disc material, the nucleus pulpous, ruptures, or herniates, through the outer cervical disc wall.Cervical disc herniation is the result of the displacement of the nucleus pulposus of the intervertebral disc, which may result in impingement of these traversing nerves as they exit the neural foramen or directly compressing the spinal cord contained within the spinal canal.In some patients, a cervical herniated disc can cause spinal cord compression, where disc material pushes on the spinal cord. This is a much more serious condition and may require a more aggressive treatment plan. Spinal cord compression symptoms include: Awkward or stumbling gait.
Most cases of cervical herniated disc pain can be successfully managed with nonsurgical treatments, such as over-the-counter pain medications, physical therapy to strengthen and stretch the neck, ice or heat packs, and/or activity modifications to avoid painful movements until the pain has subsided.Treatment with rest, pain medication, spinal injections, and physical therapy is the first step to recovery. Most people improve in 6 weeks and return to normal activity. If symptoms continue, surgery may be recommended.In most cases cervical disc herniations improve with time and symptomatic treatment. This can take 6-12 weeks. Improvement is usually seen within 2-3 weeks and full recovery in the ensuing 2-3 months.
cervical disc surgery :
Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) is a surgery to remove a herniated or degenerative disc in the neck. An incision is made in the throat area to reach and remove the disc. A graft is inserted to fuse together the bones above and below the disc.Cervical disk replacement surgery involves removing a diseased cervical disk and replacing it with an artificial disk. Before this procedure was available, the affected disk was removed and the vertebrae above and below were fused together to prevent motion.The success rate of cervical spine surgery is very high, but complications have been reported. “The take away is that most of the complications were very rare, some were almost nonexistent,” Buser and Wang said. “Dural tear and C5 palsy were the most common, but again, they had a very low frequency.
spine MRI :
A cervical (SER-vih-kul) spine MRI can detect a variety of conditions in the neck and upper back area, including problems with the soft tissues within the spinal column, such as the spinal cord, nerves, and disks.MRI can produce the most reliable snapshot of the spine that promotes the accurate diagnosis of a herniated disc.A cervical MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scan uses energy from strong magnets to create pictures of the part of the spine that runs through the neck area (cervical spine). MRI does not use radiation (x-rays). Single MRI images are called slices. The images can be stored on a computer or printed on film.
Questions About Cervical Disk Disease ?
Is walking good for herniated disc?
Absolutely. Walking is an excellent choice for patients with herniated discs, as it stimulates blood flow and oxygen to the cells. It also helps keep your discs hydrated, which is important for healing. Other low-impact aerobic activities to try are swimming and cycling
Is bed rest good for slipped disc?
The optimal sleeping position for a herniated disc is on your back. Lying on your back keeps your spine in a neutral position so you have less chance of pinching the nerve. For added comfort, nestle a small pillow or rolled-up towel under your knees and lower back.Most often 1-2 days of strict bed rest will calm severe back pain. Bed rest should not exceed 48 hours. Once you are back into your daily routine, you should take frequent rest breaks throughout the day- but avoid sitting for long periods of time.If you have a herniated disc, you may want to try sleeping on your side curled in a fetal position:
-Lay on your back and then roll over gently onto your side.
-Tuck your knees toward your chest and gently curl your torso toward your knees.
-Remember to switch sides from time to time to prevent any imbalances.
Is a hot bath good for a slipped disc?
Applying Heat, via a heating pad or heat wrap, even a hot bath may help muscle spasms in the first 2 days of initial pain. Heat helps soft issues to stretch, dilates blood vessels and decreases pain signals giving some relief to the discomfort.
Does massage help slipped disc?
Deep Tissue Massage: There are more than 100 types of massage, but deep tissue massage is an ideal option if you have a herniated disc because it uses a great deal of pressure to relieve deep muscle tension and spasms, which develop to prevent muscle motion at the affected area.
What happens if a cervical herniated disc goes untreated?
Untreated herniated discs with symptoms can become more painful and debilitating as time goes on. You may also experience bladder and bowel dysfunction and saddle anesthesia, so-called because it affects the areas on your body that would touch a saddle if you were sitting on a horse.
Is cervical surgery safe?
Although cervical disc surgery is generally safe, it does have a few risks, including.Some risks related to neck surgery can include:
bleeding or hematoma at the surgical site.
infection of the surgical site.
injury to the nerves or spinal cord.
leakage of cerebral spinal fluid (CSF)
C5 palsy, which causes paralysis in the arms.
degeneration of areas adjacent to the surgical site.