Myelopathy of the cervical spine: symptoms and causes of the disease
Myelopathy is a spinal cord injury, having a varied etiology. Risk factors that increase the likelihood of developing the disease are radiation therapy, certain autoimmune diseases (multiple sclerosis, neuromyelitis optic nerve), classes traumatic sports infectious diseases.
Spinal cord part Central nervous system. It is located in the spinal canal formed by the bodies and processes of the vertebrae, and is responsible for many functions, in particular muscular reflexes (via spinal cord all nerve impulses pass to the brain and from it). When myelopathy, for various reasons, there is a spinal nerve compression that causes symptoms such as:
- Muscle weakness (the patient can hardly lift items that are easily lifted to the disease
- Violation of the sensitivity, a feeling of numbness or tingling in the extremities. Changes pain, tactile and temperature sensitivity.
- Pain in the neck, the nape and interscapular region.
- Impaired coordination, fine motor skills (the patient is difficult, for example, to fasten buttons on a shirt), involuntary muscle twitching of the hands.
Causes of cervical myelopathy
Cervical myelopathy can cause such diseases as degenerative processes in the intervertebral discs, leading to a narrowing of the spinal canal, herniated disc, injury of the cervical spine, osteoporosis, and (seldom) tumors and congenital defects of the vertebrae. Pain in the cervical spine may be the presence of pathological disorders in the development of the soft and bony structures (vertebrae) or the intervertebral joints. Most often, the probable cause of the pain are pathological changes in the soft tissues. Quite rare, but is found as the causes of pain in the cervical one or another focus of infection or tumor (usually malignant).
Among the inflammatory processes causing pain in the cervical spine, the most common factor in the occurrence of cervical myelopathy spondylolithesis is arthritis. This disease contributes to stiffness in the joints within the cervical and severe pain. Rheumatoid arthritis that causes cervical myelopathy usually develops in the upper part. Cervical most poorly protected from the effects of traumatic factors. The result is often injury is damage to soft tissues (muscles and ligaments), which subsequently can lead to the development of myelopathy.
Diagnosis of the disease
Diagnosis of the considered diseases is thorough examination with the further conduct of radiological diagnosis of damaged areas. The aim of Neurospora is the analysis of the degree performance of its nervous system functions which are:
- providing reflex response;
- ensuring the sensitivity of the skin;
- securing verifiable reductions of striated muscles.
When checking the reflexes is observed, as a rule, the gain of the reflex response. The disease causes a loss of control over the contractions of striated muscle muscles, sometimes can even occur Spamooborona uncontrolled muscle contractions of the limbs. In addition, this disease causes numbness in arms and hands. With long-term progression of the disease without adequate treatment, there is muscle atrophy caused by compression of the spinal cord and in the absence of neurological effects on muscle structure.
For diagnosis in modern medicine, used several methods, among them the most common are:
- radiation diagnosis;
- radiography and MRI;
- computed tomography;
The survey by use of radiation diagnosis allows to identify the disease. Radiography provides the opportunity to undertake a full and proper assessment of the spine and bone, which enters into its composition. Indirect methods this type of diagnosis allows you to analyze the condition of the intervertebral discs.
MRI is today one of the most common and effective methods of diagnosing the patient. It allows you to determine the development of the disease in the earliest stages of their development. Myelography is a radiopaque examination procedure, which consists in the fact that in the brain are special substances that provide contrast, then there is computed tomography. Conducting myelography provides a definition:
- the presence of tumors of the spinal cord;
- the degree of infection of the patient;
- herniated discs;
- areas of narrowing in the channel at the spinal cord, provoked by the development of arthritis.
Methods of treatment
Most often in the treatment of this disease without involvement of the surgical intervention. Conservative methods include the following medical events:
In addition to cervical myelopathy, the body may develop a myelopathy of the thoracic spine. This is called a pathological process usually a herniated disc in the thoracic spine. The rarity of the disease due to the fact that only about 1% of all intervertebral hernia is formed in the thoracic spine. Treatment of thoracic myelopathy is carried out by surgical intervention, which is largely due to the peculiarities of the structure of the thoracic spine.
The symptoms of myelopathy thoracic
The first symptoms of myelopathy of the thoracic spine are manifested in the form of increased body temperature to 39° C and General malaise. Neurological symptoms of myelopathy occur immediately. The first signs of this disease can appear some time later in the form of mild pain, which are radicular in nature and is characterized by weakness in the limbs. The location of the pain depends on the location of the inflammatory process.
A few days after the beginning of the development of the pathological process symptoms of dysfunction of locomotor apparatus. These symptoms are rapidly progressing, thus:
- appears loss of sensitivity of the patient;
- manifested dysfunction of organs of small pelvis.
With further development of the disease thoracic appear involuntary contraction of muscular structures of the limbs.