Disease osteochondrosis is a degenerative-dystrophic changes in the cartilaginous tissues of the spine, accompanied by impaired structure and functionality of intervertebral discs. Depending on the localization of the damage, osteochondrosis of the cervical, thoracic and lumbar regions occurs.The causes of the disease are:
- degenerative changes due to age-related disorders in the blood supply to the spine;
- sedentary lifestyle;
- sedentary work, implying a long stay in the spine in an uncomfortable position;
- bruises and other mechanical damage;
- excessive exercise on the back.
Osteochondrosis often develops on the background of excess weight, because those extra pounds interfere with the normal distribution of the load on the spine. The disease can be diagnosed both in young and in more mature age. The disease osteochondrosis has its own clinical picture, depending on the localization of the problem. However, the external symptoms of degenerative changes in the cervical, thoracic and lumbar spine are common.
Signs of osteochondrosis
After the patient has passed the examination doctor will be able to diagnose the disease on the apparent curvature of the spine, traced in the transverse or longitudinal plane. Disturbances in the intervertebral discs of the cervical and lumbar region occur more often than degenerative and dystrophic changes in the chest. Usually, patients complain of a constant feeling of tiredness in the back and a pronounced pain syndrome. The pain may occur in the neck, back, chest, shoulder, or completely hit the hand. Also symptoms of osteochondrosis include:
- numbness or excessive muscle tension due to non-uniform distribution of the load on the spine;
- headache pain, tinnitus, nausea and even fainting caused by squeezing of blood vessels that are responsible for the blood supply to the brain.
Depending on the location of the damage, the symptoms of the disease may vary:
- in osteochondrosis of the cervical spine, pains in the neck can be observed, radiating to the scapula or shoulder (headaches are not rare);
- if the disease is localized in the thoracic region, the pain may pass into the axillary region or the inner surface of the shoulder;
- when dystrophic changes occur in the lower back, the pain can spread to the upper thighs.
Only a doctor can definitively diagnose osteochondrosis. After all, back pain, fatigue and other superficial signs can also be symptoms of many other diseases.