Cervical discogenic pain syndrome
Cervical discogenic pain used to describe pain caused by a damaged intervertebral disc. It is thought that discogenic pain accounts for about 36% of neck pain. This is a mechanical type of pain that is caused as the disc starts to degenerate and becomes painful itself. This is most common in the lower neck around C5-6 and C6-7 levels. The disc is typically worse in positions that increase the pressure within the disc such as sitting, looking down, poor posture at the computer and activities that involve neck flexion.
Symptoms of cervical discogenic pain syndrome
Discogenic pain (coming from the disc) and radicular pain (coming from a nerve) must be differentiated. Pain that comes from the disc can refer to other areas and a common area is just near the shoulder blades. Nerve pain usually travels down the arm in a specific way (follows a dermatome). Discogenic pain is usually chronic and dull. It can be localised, referred or radicular. Discogenic pain is mechanical and this means movement can make it worse in contrast to chemical inflammatory pain which is pretty constant. Probably the most important symptoms associated with cervical discogenic pain is it typically displays a directional preference. Direction preference means that there are certain positions that will make symptoms worse and symptoms better.
Treatments of cervical discogenic pain syndrome
Discogenic pain syndrome in the neck is treated conservatively with a combination of physiotherapy and chiropractic treatments. This will involve mechanical treatments such as McKenzie Method, joint mobilisation, muscle therapy and a range of exercises that will restore joint mechanics, muscle strength and optimal movement of the neck and spine. In rare cases, for persistent and ongoing pain our chiropractors and physiotherapists may need to send you for a surgical opinion in regards to injection therapy or other surgical procedures. The need for this is rare, chiropractic and physiotherapy treatments for cervical discogenic pain syndrome are typically very successful.