South Texas Spinal Clinic
Orthopedic Surgeons and Physical Therapists Located in San Antonio and South Texas
Neck pain is responsible for 15% of chronic pain in adults, the second-most percentage. The orthopedic surgeons at South Texas Spinal Clinic specialize in pinpointing the source of your pain and developing a customized treatment plan that draws from many therapeutic options to optimize pain relief and maximize neck function. Don’t keep living with neck pain. Call the office in the San Antonio or South Texas area or book an appointment online.
Neck Pain Q & A
What Causes Neck Pain?
Your neck consists of seven cervical vertebrae, a shock-absorbing disc between each bone, and muscles and ligaments that provide stability while allowing movement. The neck’s range of motion and its role in supporting the weight of your head make it vulnerable to soft-tissue injuries and degenerative disorders.
The most common causes of neck pain include:
- Common Neck Ache: Muscles spasms or strains often develop from stress, sleeping in an awkward position, or holding your neck and head in one position for an extended time.
- Injury: Falls, contact sports, and automobile accidents are among the top causes of neck pain. Neck injuries most often involve muscles and ligaments, but trauma can also cause a cervical fracture.
- Degenerative Disc Disease: Cervical disc degeneration, called spondylosis, occurs when discs begin to break down. Over time, discs lose water. Then they develop cracks and tears.
- Herniated Disc: A herniated disc occurs when the gel-like center of a disc ruptures and bulges out through a tear in the disc’s tough outer layer. You can develop a herniated disc from an injury, but age-related degeneration is a key factor.
How is Neck Pain Treated?
First-line treatment begins with anti-inflammatory medications and rest, which may be sufficient if you have a simple pulled muscle or strain. Diagnostic imaging — X-rays, magnetic resonance imaging or a CT scan — helps to evaluate the underlying cause.
Treatment focuses on reducing inflammation and alleviating pain. Depending on the severity and cause of your neck pain, your individualized treatment plan may include:
- Physical therapy
- Manual medicine
- Oral medications
- Muscle and joint injections
- Cervical epidural steroid injection
- Cervical nerve block
You may need surgery if conservative measures don’t relieve your symptoms or when the underlying cause of your neck pain is advanced or severe.
What Types of Surgery Treat Neck Pain?
The orthopedic surgeons at South Texas Spinal Clinic perform the following surgeries to treat neck pain:
- Microdiscectomy: This procedure uses specialized instruments to remove the tiny part of the damaged disc that’s pressing against the nerves.
- Fusion Surgery: When one or more cervical vertebrae are structurally compromised, a bone graft fuses the bones together, increasing your neck’s strength and stability.
- Laminectomy: In cases where damaged vertebrae are compressing the spinal cord, a laminectomy removes a small portion of the vertebra. That allows the spinal cord to move normally.
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