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Neck pain, shoulder and arm pain, cervical spondylitis, spinal disc bulging. Treatment ?

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Internal Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 1998
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Sir, i am 44/m/82 kg/5ft 9in. having pain in neck, upper left shoulder and left arm. got MRI done which reports

MR imaging of central spine reveals early spondylytic changes in the form of osteophytes with facetopathy and disc desiccations

diffuse disc bulge at C 2 / 3 level indenting the thecal sac with no significant neural compression

posterior disc bulge at C 3 / 4 level indenting the thecal sac with no significant neural cpmpression

diffuse disc bulge with mild posterocentral disc protrusion at C 4 / 5 level indenting the thecal sac with mild compression of bilateral exiting nerves

braod based disc bulge at C5 / 6 level indenting the thecal sac with mild compression of right exiting nerve

braod based disc bulges at C6/7 and C7/D1 levels indenting the thecal sac with no significant neural compression

this is to request, please elaborate for me the situation and advise further course of action.

Posted Sun, 29 Apr 2012 in Brain and Spine
Answered by Dr. Jasvinder Singh 26 minutes later

Thanks for posting your query.

The MRI finding are suggestive of cervical spondylitis and spinal disc bulging from Cervical 2 till thoracic 1 veretabra. This is responsible for pain in neck, upper left shoulder and left arm.

Cervical spondolysis is due to the age-related degeneration ('wear & tear') of the vertebrae and discs in the neck region.

This can cause compression of the nerves and hence pain and sometimes dizziness.

Apply warm compresses on the area of cervical spine and take some over the counter anti-inflammatory pain killer like Iburpofen after consulting your doctor.

Application of topical muscle relaxants will also help.

Cervical spondolysis also responds to anti-inflammatory drugs and cervical collars and traction.

It is also better if you correct any posture imbalances that you may have, whether in a sitting posture or in a standing posture like you should avoid sitting in front computers for long.

It is also very important to make sure that the pillow you use under your head is the correct size and thickness for your body.

Make adjustments in your diet and add lots of calcium XXXXXXX foods like curd, milk etc in your diet.

If the symptoms still persist then you may need steroid injections or surgical approach (as last approach).

Regarding the spinal disc Bulging which is also called slipped disc, it is a condition affecting the spine, in which a tear in the outer, fibrous ring of an intervertebral disc allows the soft, central portion to buldge out.

In your case, it is fortunately not causing much compression of the nerves. The majority of herniated discs will heal themselves in about six weeks and do not require surgery.

Non steroidal drugs and steroid injections are very useful.

However if the symptoms do not improve then you may need surgical management.

Hope this answers your query. If you have additional questions or follow up queries then please do not hesitate in writing to us. I will be happy to answer your queries.

Wishing you good health.


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