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(Osteoarthritis of the cervical spine; Cervical spondylathritis; Cervical spondylarthrosis)

Degenerative changes are common in the cervical spine. The degenerative process begins in the intervertebral discs and affects the posterior intervertebral joints secondarily, causing pain and stiffness of the neck, sometimes with referred symptoms in a upper limb.

It is common in the middle aged and elderly, doing prolonged work with neck in flexed position.

Cause :

The primary degenerative changes are often initiated by injury or the condition may be a manifestation of the wide-spread degenerative change that occur with increasing age.

Pathology :

Degenerative arthritis commonly occurs in the lowest three cervical joints. The changes first affect the central inter vertebral joints (between the vertebral bodies) and later the posterior inter joints. In the central joints there is degenerative narrowing of the inter vertebral disc and bone reaction at the joints margins, leads to the formation of osteophytes(spurs). The changes seen are wearing away of the articular cartilage and the formation of osteophytes(spurs) at the joint margins.

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