Spinal Cord Pain – Symptoms, Diagnosis & Treatments

Having a hard time dealing with spinal cord pain? Read this comprehensive blog to get a clear idea of the common symptoms of spinal cord pain, various scans that may be conducted for its diagnosis and the subsequent treatment options.

Symptoms of spinal cord pain

The most common symptoms of spinal cord pain include:

  • Unable to keep a normal posture because of pain & stiffness
  • Experiencing muscle spasms at rest or while performing an activity
  • Stiffness in the lower back region, leading to decreased range of motion
  • Pain radiating into the hands and legs
  • Numbness and tingling sensation in the arms

Diagnosis of spinal cord pain

Spinal cord pain that persists for over two weeks is usually due to an underlying condition that needs to be diagnosed. Following are some of the common diagnostic tests prescribed by doctors for detecting the reason behind spinal cord pain:

X-Ray

An x-ray of the spine can display the vertebrae structure & outline of the joints, helping doctors identify potential reasons behind the spinal cord pain which can include fractures, tumours, infections, etc.

MRI

With the help of an MRI, doctors can examine the spinal cord, nerve roots and nearby regions, in addition to any degeneration, enlargement or tumours. Moreover, an MRI with contrast can help diagnose infections & new compression fractures without spinal displacement.

CT Scan with 3D Reconstruction

This diagnostic test generates images that display boney detail in a much-enhanced manner than any other scan besides also showing nerves & soft tissue.

Electromyography or Nerve Conduction Velocity Testing

Also referred to as EMG/NCV testing, these are electrodiagnostic tests that help calculate the electrical activity of nerves & muscles, They assist in detecting the location of a pinched/compressed nerve that may be causing the spinal cord pain.

Treatments for spinal cord pain

Mild spinal cord pain is generally a result of muscle sprains or strains and can be successfully treated with heat & ice therapy combined with adequate rest. Physical therapy may also help in some cases. However, spinal cord pain that lasts for more than two weeks necessitates medical intervention for detecting the cause behind it. Irrespective of the scan results and the underlying condition detected, you will have two treatment options to choose from: Surgical & Non-Surgical Treatment.

Surgical Treatment

As the name suggests, surgical treatment involves surgery which comes with a lot of potential risks, complications and side effects such as:

  • Blood clots
  • Infection
  • Dural tear
  • Cerebrospinal fluid leakage
  • Sores on the face & vision loss
  • Symptoms that are repetitive/persisting
  • Nerve injury & paralysis
  • Death

Conclusion

Spinal cord pain that radiates into the hands, arms, legs, chest, etc., is a major cause of concern and requires immediate medical attention for ensuring quick diagnosis & appropriate treatment. If you have been suffering from chronic pain that is interfering with your daily life, then get in touch with the ANSSI Spine Specialists for Expert Consultation. Click on this link to schedule an appointment at an ANSSI Wellness Centre near you:

Spinal pain that persists for over two weeks is considered to be potentially serious.

Sleeping on the back or side is generally recommended for people experiencing back pain.

Spinal cord pain can be caused by a variety of reasons: from muscle strains & sprains to chronic conditions such as slipped disc, spondylosis, sciatica, etc.

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