A pinched nerve can emerge at any location in the body, and is usually caused when a nerve becomes pressed against structural components such as muscles, bones, or ligaments. This condition is known as a trapped nerve. A pinched nerve in upper back is an occurrence that happens quite frequently. This is due to the fact that there are countless nerves that pass through this region. This area of the body has a complex structure consisting of the vertebral column, ligaments, cartilage, ligaments, discs, muscles, bones, and tendons. Several problems that occur in this anatomical structure have the ability to apply pressure on the nerves located in this region of the body.
One of the main causes of a pinched nerve in upper back near the vertebral region are commonly due to a rupture in the vertebral discs that are located in this area. When the cartilage disc disintegrates, it releases a gel-like component that tends to slip beyond the ordinary radius range of the disc. The bulging section of the disintegrating disc then starts to exert pressure on the nerve, causing a great deal of pain. Osteoarthritis often affects the spinal column in elderly people that are approaching 55 years of age, causing a pinched nerve in upper back to develop. Poor posture, traumatic injury, and the development of bone spur are other common causes.
The intensity of upper back pain can vary between mild and severe, and is dependent on the amount of pressure placed upon the nerve. The pain can travel from the region of the upper back to the shoulders, neck, arms, and may even make its way to the legs. Oftentimes, the pain becomes so severe that it becomes difficult to move the parts of the body that are affected.
A pinched nerve in back is frequently diagnosed using the symptoms described by the patient, lifestyle, medical history, and a physical exam. An MRI or CT scan will then be conducted to determine the severity of damage to the nerve. An application of ice applied to the affected area can reduce inflammation and swelling. The ice should be left in place for a period of 15 minutes, but can be repeated a number of times a day when experiencing painful symptoms. A hot compress is equally comforting and can also be used to treat excessive pain in the region. You can also take a hot bath or shower to introduce heat to the upper back area. Numerous individuals alternate hot and cold applications, which can be effective in reducing pain caused by pinched nerve in upper back.
Anti-inflammatory medications may also be prescribed to treat severe pain. Additionally, tension caused from tight muscles can be greatly reduced through the use of massage therapy. If a physician finds that an individual is experiencing a pinched nerve in upper back due to poor posture while standing or sitting, the doctor will work with the individual to correct the issue.
As the extreme pain subsides, the physician will generally recommend continued physical therapy. The physical therapist will then introduce several exercises that will prove to be beneficial to the condition. These recommended exercises will stretch and strengthen the back muscles in order to provide sufficient support to the region of the upper back and other areas affected by the pinched nerve. These exercises will also contribute to maintaining correct posture throughout the day.