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Neck Pain - Causes - Symptoms - Diagnosis - Treatment - Pain Relief

Information on neck pain, arthritis, conditions, causes, diagnosis, symptoms, pain relief, prevention, surgery and treatment options. Comprised of seven cervical vertebrae, the neck is a complex structure supporting the head. Great discomfort results from arthritis in the neck. Neck pain is caused from muscles, nerves and ligaments problems, as well as the bones and joints of the spine.
  1. A - Z: Joint Pain
  2. A - Z: Natural Therapies
  3. A - Z: Pain Relief
  4. A - Z: Sports Injury
  5. A - Z: Surgery
  6. A - Z: Treatments
  7. Back Pain
  8. Joint Protection
  9. Osteoarthritis of the Neck
  10. Shoulder Pain
  11. Spinal Stenosis
  12. Spine Pain

Neck Pain - An Overview
There are several possible causes of neck pain. More often, it is due to mechanical causes rather than systemic conditions.

Neck pain
Neck pain may originate from any of the structures in the neck. These include muscles and nerves as well as spinal vertebrae and the cushioning discs in between. Neck pain may also come from regions near the neck, like the shoulder, jaw, head, and upper arms.

Neck pain (Image)
Spinal vertebrae are separated by cartilage disks filled with a gelatinous substance, that provide cushioning to the spinal column. These disks may move out of place or rupture from trauma or strain, especially if degenerative changes have occurred in the disk. When the disk moves out of place nerve roots may become compressed resulting in symptoms, such as pain, sensory and motor changes.

Cervical osteoarthritis (cervical spondylosis)
Cervical spondylosis is a disorder caused by abnormal wear on the cartilage and bones of the neck (cervical vertebrae) with degeneration and mineral deposits in the cushions between the vertebrae (cervical disks). (Illustrations).

Cervical spondylosis (Image)
Cervical spondylosis is a disorder that results from abnormal growth of the bones of the neck and degeneration and mineral deposits in the cushions between the vertebrae. Progressive neck pain is a key indication of cervical spondylosis. It may be the only symptom in many cases.

Torticollis - Wry Neck (Image)
Torticollis is a form of dystonia (prolonged muscle contractions) in which the neck muscles, particularly the sternocleidomastoid muscle, contract involuntarily causing the head to turn. Torticollis may occur without known cause (idiopathic), be genetic (inherited), or be acquired secondary to damage to the nervous system or muscles.

Torticollis - Wry Neck
Torticollis is prolonged contraction of the neck muscles that causes the head to turn to one side.

What Are Osteophytes (Bone Spurs)?
Osteophytes are bony protrusions which develop in joints affected by arthritis. X-rays may reveal evidence of osteophytes in the neck.

Arthritis of the Neck - Cervical Spondylosis
Cervical spondylosis is caused by degenerative changes in the bones and intervertebral disks of the neck. A less technical name for this condition is osteoarthritis of the neck, or degenerative disk disease of the neck. Cervical spondylosis is primarily due to aging.

Osteoarthritis Screening Quiz
Osteoarthritis is also known as "wear-and-tear" arthritis. It is typically seen as a primary disease in older people but can occur as a secondary condition in younger people. Injury, occupation, excess weight, and genetics are among the factors which cause the cartilage of a joint to wear away. Take our Osteoarthritis Screening Quiz.

The Pain Quiz - Acute vs. Chronic Pain
There's more to know about pain than the fact that it hurts. Do you know the difference between acute and chronic pain? Do men and women respond to pain differently? How many older people take a painkiller on a regular basis? What is R.I.C.E.? Are there any non-drug pain relievers? How much do you know about pain?

The Pain Relief Quiz
How much do you know about relieving pain? Pain serves as the signal that something is wrong in the body. There are many pain relieving techniques which can be tried. Do you know about the various pain treatment options? Take the Pain Relief Quiz.

Whiplash is when the soft tissues of the neck are injured by a sudden jerking or "whipping" of the head. This type of motion strains the muscles and ligaments of the neck beyond their normal range of motion.

Whiplash (Image)
The pain of whiplash may not appear right away after an accident, but sometimes may take hours to weeks to develop. Symptoms include dizziness, headache, pain or stiffness in the neck, jaw, shoulders, or arms.

Spinal - Neck injury
Your spinal cord contains the nerves that carry messages between your brain and body. The cord passes through your neck and back. A spinal cord injury is very serious because it can cause paralysis below the site of the injury.

Neck X-ray
The neck X-ray involves the 7 cervical (neck) vertebrae that are separated by flat pads of cartilage which cushion the vertebrae.

The Use of Implants in Neck Surgery
Surgeons usually employ the use of metal implants when performing cervical spine fusions. The implant spans the length of the two fused spinal bones. The implant sits in front of those vertebrae.

What To Do In A Neck Emergency / Possible Neck Injury
No one wants an emergency neck injury, but being prepared for one can lessen the chances of permanent damage, as well as death. What to do - or not to do - after calling 911.

Neck Pain
Although often eased with simple techniques at home, neck pain can sometimes be a symptom of a more serious problem requiring medical treatment, from Mayo Clinic.

Neck Pain (Overview)
Extensive explanation of the normal neck and an injured neck and what can be done to treat the problems, from allaboutbackandneckpain.com.

Neck Pain
Explanation of the causes and treatment of neck pain, from AAOS.

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