Dysfunction of Nerves
Pinched nerves occur at the base of the spine, and cause numbness in the legs. They can also occur in the neck, causing dizziness (or a loss of balance). Dizziness occurs because the pinched nerves in the base of the neck are connected directly to the brain. This compression of the nerve prevents signals from reaching the brain, including a sense of balance, referred to as a loss of equilibrium. Often pain is associated with a pinched nerve.
If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.
Pinched nerves occur in primarily somewhere along the spine, and usually manifest in the lower back or base of the neck. Pain in the neck commonly spreads through the arms if a nerve is pinched at the base of the neck.
- Pinched nerves occur at the base of the spine, and cause numbness in the legs.
- Dizziness occurs because the pinched nerves in the base of the neck are connected directly to the brain.
Common Symptoms of Nerve Disorders
Consult a doctor if you have prolonged dizziness or frequent episodes of unbalance. If your dizziness is accompanied by sensations of numbness in the hands, tingling fingers or loss of strength in one of your arms, then you may have a case of Thoracic outlet syndrome. This syndrome occurs as a result of nerves and blood vessels becoming compressed due to a lack of passage between the base of the neck and the armpit.
Muscles and bones surrounding the thoracic outlet become enlarged. This enlargement of muscle or movement of body tissues will often result in shoulder and arm pain. Occasionally, there is a blockage to blood circulation. Obesity, muscle enlargement (caused by body building or lifting heavy objects), or an extra neck rib by birth defect can lead to Thoracic outlet syndrome. To avoid irritating your symptoms, discontinue weight lifting or bodybuilding exercises. Do only light exercise if you need to lose weight. Avoid lifting anything above your head. Do not place your arms above or behind your head while sleeping. Keep your arms down at your sides while resting on your back or side. Do not sleep on your stomach.
- Consult a doctor if you have prolonged dizziness or frequent episodes of unbalance.
- This enlargement of muscle or movement of body tissues will often result in shoulder and arm pain.
Causes of Back Pain Radiating to Ribs
In the case of Thoracic outlet syndrome, surgeons open up the thoracic outlet, remove tissues that are causing the pressure on the nerves, and allow time for the nerves to heal naturally. Cubital tunnel syndrome is when the nerve is pinched along the elbow, leading to numbness or pain in the forearm, ring finger, and little finger. Cubital tunnel can be treated by having the patient wear a brace over the arm, and preventing the elbow from moving (which limits stress on the nerves and reduces the pull of the ulnar nerve). Carpal tunnel syndrome (pain and numbness in the wrists) can be treated by wearing a cast which prevents wrist movement. Surgery becomes necessary when a patient loses control of the bowel/ bladder, or if muscles are extraordinarily weak or do not function. A pinched nerve in the neck which is the primary cause for dizziness can be relieved of pressure by surgically removing some of the bone that is causing the nerve compression.
- In the case of Thoracic outlet syndrome, surgeons open up the thoracic outlet, remove tissues that are causing the pressure on the nerves, and allow time for the nerves to heal naturally.
- Carpal tunnel syndrome (pain and numbness in the wrists) can be treated by wearing a cast which prevents wrist movement.
Causes of Back Pain Radiating to Ribs
Autoimmune Diseases That Cause Peripheral Neuropathy
Exercises for Numbness in Fingers at Night
Exercises to Elongate the Neck
Tingly Feeling When Doing Pull-Ups
Signs & Symptoms of a Strained Sternocleidomastoid Muscle
Cervical Spondylosis & Massage Therapy
Exercises for a Compressed Spinal Cord
C3 and C4 Herniated Disc Symptoms
Shoulder Popping While Rotating During Swimming
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- NIH National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. Pinched nerve information page. Updated March 27, 2019.
- AdventHealth Medical Group. Cauda equina syndrome.
- AAOS OrthoInfo. Cervical radiculopathy (pinched nerve). Updated June 2015.
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- Conger A, Cushman DM, Speckman RA, Burnham T, Teramoto M, McCormick ZL. The Effectiveness of Fluoroscopically Guided Cervical Transforaminal Epidural Steroid Injection for the Treatment of Radicular Pain; a Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Pain Med. 2019 Jun 10. pii: pnz127. doi:10.1093/pm/pnz127 [Epub ahead of print]
- Keating L, Treanor C, Sugrue J, Meldrum D, Bolger C, Doody C. A randomised controlled trial of multimodal physiotherapy versus advice for recent onset, painful cervical radiculopathy - the PACeR trial protocol. BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2019 Jun 1;20(1):265. doi:10.1186/s12891-019-2639-4
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