Neck pain is considered chronic when it continues for over three months. These painful conditions tend to derive from issues in the cervical spine, either with a disc or facet joint. Common causes of chronic neck pain include:
Cervical Herniated Disc
A cervical disc becomes herniated when its jelly-like inner layer – the nucleus pulposus – leaks out through a tear in the disc’s protective outer layer due to injury or aging. A herniated disc may pinch or press against a cervical nerve, or the inflammatory proteins of the nucleus pulposus may become close enough to a nerve to cause irritation.
Cervical Degenerative Disc Disease
The cervical spine wears and tears over time, gradually losing hydration and the ability to cushion the spine’s vertebrae. If a disc suffers extensive degeneration, it can result in painful irritation of a cervical nerve.
When the cartilage in a cervical facet joint wears down enough, it can result in cervical osteoarthritis. The joint can become enlarged due to bone spur growth and inflammation, causing a nerve close by to become pinched or pressed.
Cervical Foraminal Stenosis
The foramina – the holes in the vertebral construct through which nerve roots derived from the spinal cord can exit the spinal canal – becomes narrowed, causing irritation for the nerve root that runs through it.
Cervical Spinal Stenosis with Myelopathy
Myelopathy is when compression of the spinal cord starts causing symptoms, including coordination issues with arms, legs, hands, and feet, as well as weakness.
If you are experiencing chronic neck pain and you live in Orlando, FL, contact Pain Medicine Group and let us improve your quality of life.