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A pinched nerve, or cervical radiculopathy, happens when a nerve becomes irritated or compressed in your neck. You may have this orthopedic condition if you have pain in your neck that travels down your arm or shoulder.
A pinched nerve is not a life-threatening condition. It can, however, prevent you from enjoying your daily activities. Left untreated, a pinched nerve may lead to permanent nerve damage.
Orthopedic doctors at Dignity Health Central California can diagnose your symptoms and provide a clear diagnosis. Find a Doctor for pinched nerve treatment in Central California and get back to pain-free living.
To effectively treat a pinched nerve, your doctor will determine the cause of your condition. There are two main causes for a pinched nerve in your neck. Both involve your spinal discs, which cushion the bones in your spine that allow you to bend and flex.
The first cause is degenerative disc disease, or arthritis, which occurs with age. With this condition, the discs shrink and become rigid. This makes your spine less flexible and narrows the nerve space in your spinal cord. The pressure that results leads to pinched nerve pain.
A slipped, ruptured, or herniated disc is the second cause. This happens when the gel-like center of the disc starts coming out and pinches off a nerve. A herniated disc is a common cause of pinched nerves, especially in younger people.
Any of these causes can lead to pain, numbness, tingling, and weakness in the arms, hands, or shoulders. Dignity Health Central California’s orthopedic doctors will discuss your symptoms and offer treatment options that help heal your body, mind, and spirit.
Your doctor will talk to you about your symptoms and how long you have experienced them. This will help determine the best treatment. Most of the time, treatment is not needed and the pinched nerve heals over time. If your symptoms do not get better, your doctor may recommend a soft neck collar, anti-inflammatory medicines, and physical therapy.
For pinch nerve pain that does not improve, surgery may be an option. During surgery, the damaged disc is removed to ease pressure on your spine.
You can take steps to protect your discs and prevent pinched nerves by:
If you have a pinched nerve in your neck, a Dignity Health Central California orthopedic doctor can help relieve your pain.
Dignity Health Central California provides care with humankindness for pinched nerve in Bakersfield, Merced, San Andreas, and Stockton, CA.