Osteochondrosis is a common disease of the musculoskeletal system. It is manifested by mild discomfort and severe pain, which limits a person's activity. In advanced cases, the pathology can lead to the need for surgery and even disability. Prevention and prevention of the disease reduces the risk of its occurrence or helps to achieve positive treatment results.
Osteochondrosis is a pathology that occurs as a result of a combination of factors such as genetic predisposition, human lifestyle and environmental conditions.
The disease is characterized by damage to the articular cartilage, as well as the underlying bone tissue. Normally, the cartilages provide the flexibility and mobility of the spine, but they can wear out, lose their properties and elasticity, and deform under pressure from other vertebrae.
The most common causes of the development of pathology are:
- hereditary predisposition.
- weakness of the muscular corset.
- Postural Disorders and Scoliosis.
- Mechanical injury of the spine.
- Excessive physical activity.
- Neuroemotional Stress.
- passive lifestyle.
- Diseases of the gastrointestinal tract.
- Tight uncomfortable shoes, high heels.
- General dehydration.
- Lack of essential nutrients, beriberi.
Types of osteochondrosis
This disease is included in the list of the most common complaints of patients of working age who spend up to 8-10 hours a day at the computer. Often patients do not attach importance to pain, which leads to the development of complications. If you do not want to have constant pain in your neck, head and shoulders, it is important to take preventive measures as soon as possible and, if necessary, to see a doctor as soon as possible.
The disease can be asymptomatic. Often it is accompanied by pain in the back, neck, forearm. In the advanced stage, thoracic osteochondrosis is characterized by symptoms manifested by a painful condition of the arms and legs, tinnitus. Chondrosis in the chest can also be accompanied by nausea, morning headache, pain and flickering of the eyes, and sweating. To treat the disease, taking medication and therapeutic exercises are enough.
The lumbar spine is very vulnerable. If you do not strengthen the back muscles and control your posture, you risk developing unpleasant symptoms. Chondrosis is characterized by girdle pain in the lower back, pain in the hip region and what is known as back pain.
take precautions. Keep your lower back warm, try not to overcool it. Do not carry or lift objects weighing more than 10 kg. When lifting something heavy, don't jerk or make sudden movements. Refuse any physical work in an inclined position. When mopping the floor, use a mop or squat.
Stages and symptoms of the development of osteochondrosis
The disease goes through 4 stages, accompanied by various symptoms. At the initial stage, the pathology occurs in the area of \u200b\u200bthe pulpal core of the intervertebral disc. Excessive loading leads to a decrease in the disc height and the appearance of cracks in the fiber ring. A person can feel a little uncomfortable if he is in a static position for a long time or vice versa if he moves too actively.
In the 2nd stage, the distance between the vertebrae continues to decrease, the vertebral muscles and ligaments lose their tone and sag. This leads to increased mobility of the vertebrae with affected intervertebral discs, the risk of displacement or subluxation. In the second stage, discomfort and pain appear, especially with certain types of loads or in certain positions.
With osteochondrosis of the 3rd degree, protrusions and protrusions of the intervertebral discs are formed, the development of arthrosis of the intervertebral discs is possible. A person experiences stiffness, becomes inactive. At this stage of the pathology, depending on the location of the lesion, the pain is clearly felt.
In Stage 4, the body is trying to adjust to the spinal dysfunction. This can be expressed in bone neoplasms - osteophytes. They act as vertebral fixators. But it can lead to pinched nerves and other injuries.
When examining a patient and collecting an anamnesis, a specialist conducts a primary diagnosis that suggests the presence of a disease by a visually noticeable curvature observed in the transverse or longitudinal plane of the spine. After the initial consultation, the surgeon or neurologist may order additional tests. After determining the localization of the disease and its stages, treatment can begin, the purpose of which is to eliminate the causes of pain.
The most common diagnostic methods:
- Doppler Ultrasound.
Treatment methods for osteochondrosis
Treatment only brings good results if it is carried out regularly, consistently and systematically. The therapeutic strategy of the first stage is aimed at neutralizing pain, the second stage at activating blood supply and metabolic processes in the affected areas of the spine, and the third stage shows physiotherapy and manual procedures.
With osteochondrosis of any department in the acute stage, accompanied by severe pain, the doctor may prescribe a paravertebral blockade, administering novocaine, lidocaine and other drugs to relieve muscle tension in the mobile segment of the spine, reduce swelling and muscle tension.
Combinations of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, antispasmodics, analgesics and vitamin complexes (group D, nicotinic acid) are considered effective. As local therapy, ointments are prescribed - chondroprotectors and agents with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory components.
It's important to remember that medication will only help if the pain is severe at the moment. Physiotherapeutic treatment will help to get rid of the unpleasant manifestations of the disease in the longer term.
The most commonly used therapies include:
- manual therapy;
- Physical therapy.
What does the lack of treatment lead to?
Osteochondrosis is best corrected at the initial stage of formation, before the onset of syndromes of vertebral pathologies, accompanied by chronic headaches and pain in the shoulder blades, heart and lower back. Over time, the disease leads to a change in the overall structure of the spine due to the active compensatory expansion of connective, fibrous and bone tissue.
The clinical picture of the disease depends on the localization of the pathology, the degree of development of the process and the individual characteristics of the patients. Displacements of the intervertebral discs, protrusions and hernias lead to unpleasant consequences.
- violation of blood circulation in tissues;
- pinched nerves;
- dysfunction of the spinal canal;
- edema and tissue fibrosis.
Therefore, the treatment of osteochondrosis should be started as early as possible and carried out in a complex way, with an emphasis on neutralizing inflammation and eliminating pain. If the disease manifests itself over years, is at an advanced stage and herniated discs are diagnosed, surgical intervention may be necessary.
Prevention of osteochondrosis and its treatment are inextricably linked. Their goal is to improve the patient's quality of life. If you do a sedentary job, take regular breaks. Get up every hour and a half and do simple exercises that release tension in your neck and back muscles. Try to sit correctly at the table: your back is straight, your shoulders are relaxed. Choose such chairs, the backrest of which can maximally support the spine: so that it is not overloaded.
To prevent the occurrence of the disease, it is good to regularly undergo a massage course. Massage can improve blood circulation and lymph flow, improve metabolic processes in muscle tissue and stop stagnant processes. As a result, general well-being improves, vitality increases, and some painful symptoms disappear.
Recommendations for the prevention and prevention of the development of osteochondrosis:
- Limit yourself to lifting weights. Permissible weight up to 10 kg.
- Carry weights evenly on both hands.
- Systematically perform simple exercises aimed at strengthening the spine, muscles, ligaments and joints.
- Go swimming if possible.
- Try not to sit in one position for a long time.
- Take supplements containing mucopolysaccharides - elements that make up cartilage.
Prevention of osteochondrosis of the spine is a less difficult task than its further treatment. Think about your health and take care of it before it reminds you of yourself.