Chronic neck pain relief usually begins with a program of conservative treatment, which can include physical therapy, pain medication, exercise, behavior modification or therapeutic massage. The method of pain management to be used depends on the diagnosis, which will be arrived at once your doctor has asked questions about your symptoms, performed tests, and analyzed your medical history.
You may have questions of your own as you work with your doctor to develop a plan for chronic neck pain relief. One of those questions may be: What is chronic pain? The answer: Pain, whether intermittent or constant, is considered “chronic” when it lasts for three months or more without improvement. And, with that question answered, the next question is likely to be: What causes chronic neck pain? The answer to this question is not as straightforward, because the cause could be any of the following conditions:
- Muscle strain
- Ligament sprain
- Herniated disc
- Spinal stenosis
- Bulging disc
- Bone spurs
- Degenerative disc disease
No matter the cause, your next – and most important – question will probably be: How can I find relief from neck pain? Again, it generally begins with a program of conservative treatment. However, if chronic neck pain persists even after weeks or months of conservative treatment, your doctor might suggest surgery as an option. The goal of surgery is to achieve upper back and neck pain relief by decompressing an irritated or impinged nerve root, which might be causing symptoms like tingling, numbness, or muscle weakness, in addition to pain. Traditional decompression surgery typically involves vertebral fusion or disc replacement, procedures that require a long hospital stay and lengthy recuperation.
Laser Spine Institute (LSI) offers an alternative to traditional surgery. The surgeons at LSI use gentle, endoscopic techniques to perform minimally invasive, outpatient procedures that can provide chronic neck pain relief. Contact LSI to learn more, or for a free review of your CT scan or MRI.