Pain in neck is common in many people and there is a number of reasons associated with it. However, most of these cases are found to have a pinched nerve in neck. Made of cord-like structures, our nervous system is extremely complicated and is very much complex.
These structures mainly convey the electrochemical signals to and from the brain. When a nerve is pinched, it offers distortion to the signals and, as an effect, we sense pain.
Whenever a nerve gets damaged or injured due to pressure or compression, it gets pinched. A nerve that is pinched in neck becomes unable to transfer those electrochemical signals to or from the brain; this also depends on the exact location of the pinched nerve, as by knowing the location of pain, one can know the cause of it.
Pain, muscular weakness and numbness are the most ordinary signs of a pinched nerve, though the location and the exact type of the nerve can define the best about the symptoms. Pinched nerve in neck sometimes can cause severe pain and shouldn’t be taken lightly. A doctor while diagnosing the pinched nerve will ask several questions to determine the type of the nerve that is pinched; the questions are usually about the severity of the pain, the severity of the weakness that is being felt.
There are cases in which a tingling sensation is felt that pricks up the pain. A pinched nerve in neck can make the affected area “dead” for some time too. A nerve that is connected with the arm gets pinched in neck, can result in the symptoms being felt in the arm as well. The doctor will then examine the affected area. This process would also include the inspection of the strength, muscle tone or the sensation in muscles. Medical history very much counts as well, as this will make the doctor aware of whether the patient should undergo of any more medical tests. When a doctor thinks that the patient has a twisted nerve in neck, he can advise patients to take X-ray test to make sure his assumptions are true or not.
If the patient experiences pain for weeks, he/she can be suggested to get a CTI scan or an MRI scan. These tests would help in determining whether the patient has to undergo for any surgery. Nerve conduction or EMG (electromyography) study can also be required. In the nerve conduction exam the areas that are affected are stimulated with placid electrical impulse, hence rate of the impulse can be measured.
A severely pinched nerve in neck can generally be treated with ice. In case if the pinched portion is affected over an arm, a brace like setup might be required for some time. As the brace will oppose the movement at the affected area, hence the pinched nerve recovers soon. Anti-inflammatory medications such as Ibuprofen or naproxen are also recommended for people suffering from a pinched nerve in neck. Whatever it may be, this issue should be taken seriously.