By Brooke Strickland and Dr. Andrew Cash
Radiculitis causes pain that radiates along the nerve, due to irritation of the root of the nerve that connects to the spine. Radiculitis that happens in the thoracic spine will likely cause pain in the chest area. The area that is inflamed is very painful and can even cause a numb or tingling sensation and many times symptoms can include a tight feeling around the chest. The condition is usually caused by an injury to the nerves in the thorax including strain or sprains. IT is more common to see people that are in sports or carry repetitively heavy loads on their backs to have this type of injury. Family history can also play a part in this condition.
Treatment is usually conservative and includes use of anti-inflammatory medicines, physical therapy, chiropractic treatment, as well as not participating in activity that can strain the neck and back on a regular basis. Patients that undergo this initial conservative treatment usually see improvement within a few weeks or months. If these treatments don’t work, your doctor may recommend epidural steroid injections and if this doesn’t work, surgery may be needed.
There is no way to specifically prevent the condition from happening, but maintaining a healthy weight, good muscle tone, and avoiding significant strain to the back can all help reduce incidences of developing this.
For more information on this condition, contact Dr. Cash at Desert Institute of Spine Care for an appointment at: http://www.disclv.com.