Symptoms and treatment of osteochondrosis
An osteochondrosis is a disease in which degenerative-dystrophic changes occur in intervertebral discs, vertebrae, and also small joints of the spine.Osteochondrosis is a faithful companion of the elderly.But more and more often young people are diagnosed with the diagnosis, which is probably associated with predominantly sedentary work, unhealthy lifestyle, and low physical activity.It can be safely assumed that most of the adult population has signs of osteochondrosis.Table of contents:
The spinal column's elasticity, mobility and ability to withstand physical activity depend primarily on the condition of the intervertebral discs.At the heart of the pathological process in osteochondrosis is a disruption in the nutrition of the structures of the spine, in particular the intervertebral disc.This leads to changes in the normal structure of the tissues, the intervertebral disc loses its elasticity, its shape changes.Such metamorphosis leads to a narrowing of the intervertebral discs and, as a consequence, the tightening of the nerve roots.Actually, these changes explain the appearance of neurologic symptoms, in particular, back pain in osteochondrosis.
In the future, degenerative processes occur in the small joints of the spine, bone growths on the surface of the vertebrae are formed.All these changes lead to a decrease in the flexibility of the spinal column.
Similar transformation of cartilage and bone tissue is the result of physiological aging of the body.But under the influence of certain adverse factors, dystrophic changes in the intervertebral joints occur earlier than the prescribed time. Such factors include:
- Sedentary lifestyle;
- Heavy physical work;
- Professions that are characterized by a long standing or sitting during working hours;
- Flat feet, valgus deformation of feet;
- Deformities of the spine;
- Autoimmune diseases of connective tissue;
- Oscillations of the hormonal background( pregnancy, menopause);
- Doing great sport;
- Injuries of the spine, etc.
Types of osteochondrosis
The features of the clinical picture of the disease depend on which segment of the spinal column the pathological process originated. There are the following types of osteochondrosis:
Osteochondrosis of the cervical region is common.The muscular skeleton of the neck is developed quite poorly, therefore, against the background of osteochondrosis, even with an insignificant load, the vertebrae are displaced and, consequently, the vessels and nerves of the neck are compressed.This explains the specificity of the clinical picture for osteochondrosis of the cervical region.
So, the main signs of cervical osteochondrosis are:
- Constant pain in the neck and occipital region, increasing when moving in the neck;
- Hemicranial pains in one hemisphere;
- Dizziness, tinnitus;
- Pain in the hands;
- Sensation of numbness and tingling in the hands.
The defeat of the osteochondrosis of the thoracic region is rare.The main prerequisite for the development of the disease is the presence of deformations of the spine.
Signs of chest osteochondrosis:
- Blunt, aching pains in the chest, which are often shinning;
- Strengthening of pain during corners, sneezing, coughing, laughing;
- Visceral pain in the region of the heart, right hypochondrium, abdomen;
- Numbness, paresthesia in the area of the skin of the chest.
The most common variant of osteochondrosis.Probably, this is due to the fact that the greatest burden falls directly on the lumbar region.Symptoms of lumbar osteochondrosis:
- Achary, less often acute low back pain, increasing during movement or prolonged exposure in one static position;
- Feeling of stiffness in the lower back;
- To reduce pain, a person takes a forced pose;
- Aching or acute pain( by the type of lumbago) in the buttock, thigh, lower leg;
- Tingling, paresthesia in the leg area.
Diagnosis of osteochondrosisRecommended to read:
For the detection of osteochondrosis, ray methods are used: X-ray, computer and magnetic resonance imaging of the spine.The most characteristic and important feature of the early signs of osteochondrosis is a decrease in the height of the intervertebral space.
In the later stages of the degenerative process, edge growths( osteophytes) appear on the surface of the vertebrae.They are easier to detect on the lateral radiographs, since osteophytes are located in front and behind the vertebrae.
In addition, with osteochondrosis, the bodies of adjacent vertebrae are displaced, which can also be determined on an X-ray.
Treatment of osteochondrosis
Treatment of osteochondrosis is more effective the earlier it was started.As already mentioned, osteochondrosis is a change in the structure of intervertebral discs, vertebrae.Unfortunately, many people for a long time ignore back pain and do not turn to the doctor in time, missing the moment when stopping the pathological process is still possible.
Treatment of osteochondrosis is carried out with the help of medicines, physiotherapy exercises, massage, surgical intervention.
- Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs( diclofenac, ibuprofen, indomethacin) in the form of tablets, ointments, injections for pain relief;
- Muscle relaxants( baclofen, midokalm, sirdalud);
- Chondroprotectors( structum, chondroxide) - promote the regeneration of diseased cartilage;
- Vitamin and mineral complexes;
- Vasodilator preparations( pentoxifylline);
- Drugs that normalize metabolism in tissues( actovegin).
After elimination of the exacerbation of the disease, one should proceed to rehabilitation.So, physical therapy is a very important aspect of the fight against osteochondrosis.The performance of certain exercises contributes to the formation of a muscular corset.This is extremely important, because it is thanks to a strong muscular corset that the physical load is distributed evenly over the spine.With regular performance of the complex of exercises, the stiffness in the spine will be lost, and the volume of movements increases.Strengthen the effect of therapeutic exercise will help massage, fizioprotsedury, reflexology, as well as stretching the spine.
In the event of complications in the form of intervertebral hernia, radiculitis and with the ineffectiveness of conservative treatment, resort to surgical intervention.The purpose of surgical treatment is to eliminate compression of nerve roots and vessels, as well as to stabilize the structure of the intervertebral disc or vertebra.
Treatment of osteochondrosis at home
Folk remedies will help alleviate the symptoms of osteochondrosis, but in no case can replace the basic treatment.On the Internet, you can find a lot of folk ways of treatment, but not all of them are safe, so be sure to consult a doctor.
Traditional medicineRecommended to read:
The general principle of folk treatment of osteochondrosis is the use of substances that have an irritating effect.As a result, the blood supply in a certain area of the body improves, as well as pain reduction.
In folk medicine, there is such a recipe for rubbing: mix 0.25 cups of vodka with 0.5 cups of honey, add 0.75 cups of grated radish, and also two tablespoons of salt.The resulting mixture needs to rub the harassing back area twice a day.The procedure must be repeated within a week.
To eliminate pain, you can apply a potato compress to the back.Grated raw potatoes must be mixed with honey in the same proportions.Then the resulting mixture wrapped in gauze, attach to the back and wrapped in a handkerchief.You can use a compress with a mug.For its preparation, pour a glass of boiling water one spoonful of finely chopped burdock leaves.Blend the mixture in gauze and attach to the back for half an hour.After removing the compress, you must wrap your back with a warm kerchief.
You can do even easier: rub the radish, put it in a cotton stocking, and then lie with your back on it from above.
Note: is important to use caution when using folk remedies, do not touch your face.Radish and other plants in case of eye contact are capable of provoking a burn of the cornea.
Physical exercises can be done only outside the periods of exacerbation.In acute pain should refrain from doing gymnastics, because this will only increase pain.
An approximate set of exercises can look like this:
- Lie on your back and straighten your legs.Stretch the foot of the right leg to yourself, and the toe of the left foot from yourself.So it is necessary to do it in turn.
- On your back, put your hands behind the back of your head.The legs must be brought together and bent at the knees.Knees should be tilted to the left side, and the head to turn in the opposite direction.Hold for a few seconds.Then move your knees to the right, and head to the left.
- Sit on your back, hands along the body.You need to bend your knees and raise your pelvis.In this position, stay a few seconds.On exhalation, lower the pelvis.
- Turn over on your side.Straighten the upper leg and swing it back and forth.
- Initial position on all fours.Bend your back, hold on so just for a few seconds, and then bend in the lower back.Turn over on your back,
- .Bent the left knee to pull to the right elbow, and then vice versa.
Grigorova Valeria, medical reviewer