The neck is one of the most important parts of the body, as it's responsible for supporting the weight of the head and is involved in a wide range of basic and essential functions. Consisting of the cervical vertebrae (i.e. the upper vertebrae of the spine), muscles, and nerves, the neck is highly susceptible to injury.
As interventional pain management specialists with extensive experience diagnosing and treating neck pain of all kinds, we’ve seen the full range of injuries that can happen. Here are some of the most common types of neck injuries we treat at The Spine & Sports Health Center.
1) Pinched Nerve
Sometimes referred to as radiculopathy, when a nerve becomes compressed by surrounding tissues, it’s known as a pinched nerve. Pinched nerves can happen anywhere along the spine and often occur in the neck. The most common symptoms of cervical radiculopathy include radiating pain, numbness, and muscle weakness.
Whiplash is a neck injury that occurs when the head moves back and forth in a forceful, rapid motion, resulting in traumatic strain on the neck. It typically happens during car accidents, but can also be caused by playing contact sports. In some cases, even a very strong sneeze can cause whiplash. There are many symptoms associated with whiplash, the most common of which are neck pain, stiffness, limited mobility of the neck, headaches, dizziness, and tingling or numbness.
3) Cervical Herniated Disc
The spine consists of interlocking vertebrae bones stacked together in a column. Between each vertebra is a rubbery piece of cartilage known as an intervertebral disc, which acts as a shock absorber between the bones, allowing for the safe movement of the back and neck. Intervertebral discs have a hard, fibrous exterior and a soft, jelly-like inner nucleus. When the soft nucleus bulges out through the exterior, it’s referred to as a herniated disc. Other names for it include bulging discs, slipped discs, and ruptured discs. Cervical herniated discs can cause radiating, electric-like pain in the neck that extends into the shoulders, arms, or hand.
Common Causes of Neck Injuries
Neck injuries can be caused by a wide range of activities. One of the most common is car accidents. Even a small fender-bender can cause an impact that leads to violent jostling of your neck. Neck injuries are also common in sports, especially dynamic, contact sports where your neck is susceptible to sudden forceful movements.
Interventional Pain Management for Neck Injuries
Neck pain and injuries can cause a lot of distress and concern for the patients experiencing it, especially if the pain continues to persist. Few things are scarier for patients than the thought of undergoing neck surgery. The good news is that there are many minimally-invasive ways that neck injuries can be treated without having to resort to surgery. Some examples of interventional pain management techniques that can effectively bring pain relief include:
- Epidural steroid injections
- Nerve blocks
- Radio-frequency ablation
Get Advanced Care for Neck Pain & Injuries in Hudson County, NJ
If you’ve recently experienced a neck injury, The Spine & Sports Health Center can help. We offer a range of highly targeted, modern treatment options and techniques to help our patients find pain relief. Contact us today to schedule an appointment at one of our locations in Hoboken, Jersey City, or Bayonne, NJ.