Radiculopathy Treatment In Dallas
Radiculopathy is a neurological symptom that develops when a spinal nerve root is compressed or pinched. The condition can develop at any age but is more common in individuals over 50.
What Causes Radiculopathy?
Compression or irritation of a nerve root in the spinal column causes radiculopathy. It can be mechanical or attributed to degenerative changes or trauma.
The primary causes of compressed nerves in the spine include:
- Herniated discs
- Bone spurs
- Age-related Spondylosis
- Thickening of spinal ligaments and muscles
- Disc degeneration
- Spinal infections
- Heavy lifting
- Genetic disposition to degenerative arthritis
The symptoms of radiculopathy depend on the site of nerve compression. They generally affect one side of the body and can worsen with specific movements or activities. The most common signs and symptoms of this spine condition include:
- Numbness or tingling in the arms or legs
- “Pins and needles” sensation in the arms, hands, or legs
- Burning or electric sensation that radiates to the arms or legs
- Pain in neck, shoulder, or back
- Decrease in fine motor skills
- Impaired reflexes
Types of Radiculopathy
Nerve compression can occur along any area of the spine:
- Lumbar radiculopathy is the most prevalent site of radiculopathy is the lower back. This is often compounded by sciatica that manifests as weakness, tingling, and pain down the back of one leg.
- Cervical radiculopathy describes the impingement or injury to a nerve in the neck or cervical spine.
- Thoracic radiculopathy affects the mid back and is relatively rare since this area of the spine is less prone to age-related wear and tear.
Radiculopathy Surgery & Non-Surgical Treatments
In many cases, radiculopathy can be successfully treated without surgery. Treatment modalities will depend on the site of the nerve compression and the severity of symptoms. First-line treatment options may include non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications, pain relievers, ice and heat application, and steroid injections. Targeted stretches and physical therapy can strengthen muscles and help ease painful symptoms.
If radiculopathy symptoms persist or intensify, minimally invasive spine surgery may be indicated to address the nerve impingement and relieve pressure. Decompression surgery using microsurgical techniques ensures less blood loss, smaller incisions, and a faster return to normal activities.
Radiculopathy can typically be diagnosed with a thorough physical examination that reveals motor and sensory deficits. Imaging tests may be indicated to confirm the exact cause and site of the radiculopathy. These tests include:
- X-rays – provide a general assessment of boney structures and the presence of other abnormalities.
- Magnetic resonance (MRI) scan – pinpoints any injury or trauma to soft tissues and nerve roots in the spinal cord.
- Computed tomography (CT) scan – visualizes any irregularities of the bone and surrounding structures.
Radiculopathy Treatment in Dallas-Fort Worth
When conservative measures do not relieve symptoms of radiculopathy, Dr. David Barnett takes the least invasive approach to alleviate pain and eliminate nerve compression. A leading neurosurgeon and spine specialist in DFW, Dr. Barnett has over three decades of experience treating degenerative conditions and acute spine injuries. To explore the best treatment options with a board-certified Dallas neurosurgeon, contact our office today.
Seeking a second opinion?
Dr. Barnett’s 26 years of experience lends to a level of advice and treatment that will bring an end to your back pain.
Learn More >
What Our Patients Have to Say
From start to finish, Dr. Barnett and his staff were always informative and professional. Dr. Barnett performed my neck surgery and lower back surgery all during a pandemic and everything worked out perfect. Highly recommend Dr. Barnett. Top notch.