The anatomical and physiological features of the cervical spine leave a definite imprint on the clinical and radiological manifestations of intervertebral osteochondrosis. Most often (23.9%) of osteochondrosis of the cervical spine are found in representatives of such sports as classical, freestyle, sambo and judo wrestling. A high percentage of sportsmen’s diseases is caused by the specific nature of physical loads on the cervical spine (holding on the bridge, frequent falls on the head, increased flexion-extension mobility in the cervical spine). This is followed by sports such as athletics and weightlifting. Quite often, osteochondrosis of the cervical spine is caused by hammer throwers, disk throwers, and core pushers.
Also noteworthy is the fact that 86% of patients were under the age of 35 years.
Symptoms of osteochondrosis of the cervical spine . Pain, which is often accompanied by numbness (sensation of “crawling creeps” all over the arm). The pain intensifies with coughing, sneezing, and tilting the head. Sometimes head movements are accompanied by a crunch in the cervical spine. Objectively determined stiffness and tension of the cervical muscles. Often there is a syndrome of the anterior scalene muscle.
This symptom is characterized by pain along the inner surface of the shoulder, forearm, and hand to the fourth to fifth fingers.
With osteochondrosis of the cervical spine, craniocerebral disturbances are possible, which are associated with pathology of the vertebral artery. In the pathogenesis of the vertebral artery, in the first place is the proliferation of bone processes in the direction of the intervertebral holes. The leading symptom is a headache, which is localized in the neck and extends to the parietal region. The pain intensifies with head movements. Sometimes dizziness, nausea, and even vomiting are observed.
A number of visceral disorders are characteristic , which consist of a number of syndromes, among which the leading one is cardiac. Cervical angina is characterized by pain in the shoulder girdle and interscapular region, followed by the movement of pain in the region of the heart. As a rule, such changes are not recorded on the electrocardiogram.
The main radiological signs of cervical osteochondrosis are: a decrease in the height of the intervertebral disc, subchodular sclerosis, marginal growths on the front and rear surfaces of the vertebral body, deformation of the uncovertral processes, subluxation of the vertebral bodies, and in some cases retrograde spondylolisthesis (as a sign of instability).
Treatment can be conservative and prompt. With conservative treatment during the exacerbation period, maximum rest is created for the cervical spine. The patient is placed on the shield and put a small pillow under his head. When the torso is upright, it is necessary to wear a collar like Shants. Drug treatment involves B vitamins, rumalon, rheopirin, pyrabutol, analgin.
Of the physiotherapy procedures, the most widely used are electrophoresis with novocaine, ultrasound, diadynamic currents, currents of the “Wave” type. A good effect is given to the massage of the collar zone in order to relieve muscle contracture, and then maintain a certain muscle tone. After removing the pain syndrome, physiotherapy exercises are widely used to improve blood circulation, create and strengthen the muscular collar. If conservative treatment is ineffective, they resort to surgical treatment.