What Causes Neck Pain?

30 Oct What Causes Neck Pain?

In this article, we will look at four conditions that can cause neck pain. In all of the following cases, consulting with a pain management expert is in order to arrive at the proper diagnosis.

Cervicothoracic Interspinous Bursitis Neck Pain:

While cervicothoracic interspinous bursitis is not common, it does appear in individuals and must be treated by a pain management professional. This condition presents with pain in the lower cervical (neck) area and the upper thoracic spine. When speaking with pain management experts, patients report that their pain is constant, aching, and at times dull. It does not radiate.

To understand this condition, we must know more about bursitis. Bursitis occurs when the bursa becomes inflamed. Bursa are small, fluid-filled pads that are found in joints and around tendons and muscles. For this particular condition, the ligaments and muscles of the lower cervical and upper thoracic spine can become inflamed by overuse, thus resulting in pain which can be acute or chronic in nature.

In order to diagnose cervicothoracic interspinous bursitis a pain management doctor must be consulted. He or she will need to do a physical exam and may also need to order MRI’s of the upper thoracic spine and the lower cervical spine. For most people, effective treatment comes about through a combination of physical therapy and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications. Some patients may also need treatment regimes that include an injection to the area.

Those suffering from cervicothoracic bursae conditions must see a pain management professional as soon as possible.

Cervical Strain:

Cervical strain is caused injury to the cervical spine area and the soft tissue in the area. Those who suffer from cervical strain present with pain located in the next and can move into the shoulders. Many of those with this condition will also complain of headache.

A pain management professional can diagnose this condition through physical exam and patient history. MRI’s may be needed in some cases. Treatment for this condition often includes physical therapy, muscle relaxants, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications, and cervical epidural blocks in some cases.

Fibromyalgia of the Cervical Musculature:

While this has a long uncommon name, it is actually one of the most common pain conditions that affect the neck and other parts of the body. When this condition is present in the neck, it presents with myofascial trigger points. If these trigger points are stimulated, pain will come about or be increased.

Diagnosis of fibromyalgia in the neck area is based on taking a patient history and physical exam that includes examination of the trigger points.

Effective treatment of fibromyalgia of the cervical spine includes using certain techniques that can interrupt pain cycles. They do this by eliminating those trigger points by using regional blocks or, in some cases, Botox. It must be understood that the treatment for this condition will vary from one person to the next. Your pain management specialist will need to develop a personalize treatment plan that can alleviate the pain and help the patient to recover physically.

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