Health & Fitness

What Is The Mechanism Of Injury For Spondylosis?


After a long hour of using a smartphone or working in front of a computer/laptop, you may have experienced neck pain or feeling stiffness to the neck area. While this discomfort can be deal with rest and over-the-counter medication, some cases may need more than just what can be done at home. Those with spondylosis may want to opt for more than just over-the-counter medication when the condition persists. In this DoctorOnCall’s article, we will learn more on spondylosis.

Spondylosis is the degenerative disorder which causes changes to the normal spine. In other words, it is osteoarthritis of the spine. This means that it is the result of “wear and tear” on the soft tissue and bone that create the spine. This also means that spondylosis is commonly found in those aged 60 or above as the condition accounts for 85% of adults of such age. While it is true that spondylosis can affect any part of the spine, most cases of spondylosis can be found affecting the neck (cervical) area and low back (lumbar) areas.

While it is true that the main cause for spondylosis is ageing or merely getting older, there are risk factors that can cause a person to develop spondylosis earlier than other people or making a person likely to have the condition. This includes being overweight, sedentary lifestyle, repetitive movement on the spine, spinal injuries and smoking. Some people are also susceptible to develop spondylosis due to genetic factors. Injuries are also a factor that can cause a person likely to have spondylosis.

Speaking of injury, do you know what is the mechanism of injury for spondylosis? When we speak of the mechanism of injury, this refers to the way damage to the body happens. In the case of spondylosis, it is the way for how the spine is damaged. Mechanism of injury for spondylosis is thought to be the excessive spinal motion and repetitive trauma. The injury is made worse with growth of bone and reactive osteoarthritis caused by disc degeneration. The disc degeneration is caused by the ageing process that causes changes in the spinal disc space and changes to the surroundings soft tissue and bony structures.

Spondylosis symptoms will usually depend on the spinal levels affected. Cervical spondylosis often causes symptoms of neck pain with pain that may spread into the shoulder or down the arm. Arm weakness may occur if there is nerve that is compressed. In rare cases, cervical spine may cause swallowing difficulty. Lumbar spondylosis is often presented with symptoms of pain and morning stiffness. Sitting for a long period of time may trigger pain. Repetitive movements such as bending and lifting can increase pain.

Due to the fact that symptoms can be a great concern, it is best for those with symptoms of spondylosis to get checked by doctors. Diagnosis is made by doctors through medical history and physical examination. Physical examination will be focused on checking the spine function. Doctors may order tests such as imaging tests to look for changes in the spine. Imaging tests such as x-ray are usually the initial imaging study before proceeding to MRI or CT scan. This will help doctors understand the cause for the spondylosis and the treatment plan needed. Some cases may require electromyography to evaluate the electrical activity of the nerve as it transmits signals to the muscles at contraction and at rest. Nerve conduction study may also be recommended to check for the spinal nerve function. Despite the fact that spondylosis in general are not considered serious issue, signs such as numbness, shooting or tingling pain that radiates from the back to other parts of the body, difficulty walking or lack of coordination and loss control over urination or bowel movement, should be sign that a person need immediate medical attention.

Spondylosis can cause great pain but there are treatments available that help patients to cope with the condition. The good news is, most patients do not need to go through surgery to fix the issue. Most people with spondylosis can benefit from pain medications, muscle relaxants and anti-inflammatory drugs. Hot or cold therapy can be done at home to ease the pain. Patients are advised to go for physical therapy as it can help to stretch and strengthen the neck or back while reducing the pain and stiffness related to spondylosis. Patients who are overweight may need to try losing some weight. Patients can always ask their health professional on ways to move without triggering more pain. This will include one way to improve and maintain good posture. Spine surgery is uncommon in treating spondylosis but in certain cases such as nerve compression, surgery is recommended.

It can be concluded that spondylosis is a condition where there is loss of normal spine structure and function. It is commonly caused by degenerative disorder. Symptoms of spondylosis will depend on the affected spine. Treatment for spondylosis often does not involve surgery but surgery is recommended in some cases.

Lisa Marie
My name is Lisa Marie. I'm a health professional and love to write about health and fitness. My motivation is that I also love to learn new things.

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