What is Cervical Radiculopathy?
Cervical Radiculopathy is a wordy condition that has unfortunate side-effects. It comes about as a result of compression to one or more of the nerves of the cervical vertebrae which make up the upper neck. For those who are suffering from Cervical Radiculopathy or believe that they may be, chiropractic realignment represents a potential step towards recovery.
Cervical Radiculopathy Symptoms
People who suffer from Cervical Radiculopathy generally complain of either pain or decreased sensation in their upper extremities. This may manifest itself as aches and pains down the arms, decreased feeling in the finger tips, or decreased grip strength. Other symptoms may include headaches, decreased upper arm reaction time, neck pain, and muscle spasms. Cervical Radiculopathy Causes
Cervical Radiculopathy Causes
Nerve compression in the upper neck can result from a variety of factors. In about 25 percent of cases, cervical radiculopathy is caused by disc herniation in the neck. But other factors, such as degenerative changes to the neck caused by natural aging processes, as well as arthritis, are potential culprits. Likelihood of cervical radiculopathy increases with age – approximately 200 people out of every 100,000 in their 50’s suffer from some form. Additionally, risk factors for developing cervical radiculopathy include: heavy manual labor involving regular lifting of 25 pounds or more, smoking, and driving or operating heavily vibrating equipment.
Chiropractic Treatment for Relief
Chiropractors are trained in the diagnosis and treatment of spinal and nerve disorders. Therefore, seeking their guidance is a prudent choice for those that believe they are suffering from some form of cervical radiculopathy. Approximately 50 percent of sufferers who seek treatment see resolution of their symptoms within 6 to 12 weeks.
Generally, a chiropractor will make use of X-rays of the upper neck in order to diagnose the cause of discomfort. They will also perform a thorough evaluation that incorporates the patient’s personal history and lifestyle. In the event that cervical radiculopathy is indeed thought to be the culprit, a chiropractor will make use of a variety of non-invasive techniques to realign the vertebrae and take pressure off of the compressed nerve or nerves.
If necessary, a chiropractor will also utilize spinal decompression therapy. This is a procedure which helps to decompress the irritated nerve and allows for fluid and nutrients to flow into the injured disc. Decompression therapy involves a special apparatus which uses up to 25 percent of a patient’s weight in order to decompress the spine for between 10 and 12 minutes.
The non-invasive methods that are associated with chiropractic care engender themselves well to cervical radiculopathy relief – the good news is almost 90% of those suffering from this disorder find relief without the use of surgical procedures!