Cervical spondylosis is a common injury that often occurs when playing sports. In such an injury, a fracture develops in the spinal column’s bones involving the neck.
Technically, cervical spondylosis is defined as arthritis of the neck. The bones in the neck (or “cervical spine”) are affected by aging and the inevitable deterioration of arthritis in the joints. Unlike spinal osteoarthritis, cervical spondylosis rarely results in disabilities or crippling. Nevertheless, you should seek out medical care if this condition develops.
Who Is At Risk for Cervical Spondylosis?
According to recent studies, cervical spondylosis affects about 85% of persons over 60 years old. On the other hand, this condition is also common in adolescent athletes participating in sports and activities that place stress on or continually overstretch/hyperextend the spine. Finally, cervical spondylosis may also develop at birth, specifically in those with thin vertebrae.
With cervical spondylosis, the intervertebral disks gradually lose their water content, causing the disks to become stiff, shrink, and bulge as the vertebrae move closer together. Sharp bone spurs may develop to provide strength. Cervical spondylosis also deteriorates the cushioning between the disks.
Common Cervical Spondylosis Symptoms
Not all patients suffering with cervical spondylosis experience the same symptoms. The most common complaint is pain caused by pressure being placed on surrounding nerve roots. If cervical spondylosis becomes very severe, patients may also complain of pain in the back of neck, tingling or muscle weakness in the arms or legs. Pinched nerves also frequently develop with this condition.
Some of the less common symptoms of C.S., including those related to direct pressure being placed on the cervical spine, include trouble walking, total body weakness, the loss of balance, and the loss of bowel and/or bladder control. Patients may also experience “parasthesia,” shocks in the hands and legs caused by the lack of blood flow and nerve compression.