Osteochondrosis, scoliosis, intervertebral hernia ... In most cases, we ourselves are to blame for all this. The root of evil is unhealthy diet and posture, lack of physical exertion, bad habits. The result is a disappointing diagnosis of osteochondrosis of the thoracic spine. Symptoms and treatment of this disease will be the subject of our conversation.
How often and what are the problems on the second floor of the spine?
Osteochondrosis of the thoracic region does not occur as often as the cervical or lumbar. This is due to anatomy. In the central part of the spine is stable and durable; in addition, it is less subjected to loads, because it is additionally reinforced with ribs.
The risk group for this disease includes people "in years", those who have sedentary work and a sedentary lifestyle. However, this pathology is increasingly being diagnosed in adolescents; by the age of 30-35, the number of cases increases dramatically, and by the age of 45 it is already recorded in every second.
A little discomfort, muscle tension and "tolerable" pain during inspiration and stooping are of little concern to anyone. A person usually turns to a doctor when the pain becomes sharp and does not allow them to live normally. Osteochondrosis of the thoracic region is not such a harmless disease. In this disease, intervertebral discs are affected and irreversible changes in the bone and ligament apparatus occur. Its danger lies not only in pain. The fact is that the nourishment of vital organs begins to suffer from squeezing of blood vessels and nerve endings.
Where does the disease come from? Its causes are changes in the structure, destruction and deformation of intervertebral discs, which act as shock absorbers, pathological growth of bone tissue. This is a consequence of physical inactivity, spinal injuries, heavy physical exertion (associated with improper weight lifting), metabolic disorders, overweight, weak immunity, frequent colds, infections, smoking, stress. In women, among other things, this is a hobby for high heels and carrying a baby.
How does the "pillar of life" behave in such a disease?
Thoracic osteochondrosis has various symptoms. The disease skillfully "forges" other diseases. Consider the most characteristic symptoms of breast osteochondrosis in women:
- pain in the interscapular region or on the side of one scapula. Her echoes can be felt in the neck, shoulder girdle, upper limbs. In advanced cases, it is so strong that a person cannot even turn the neck;
- discomfort and pain in the chest, the intensity of which increases with inspiration;
- paresthesia or discomfort (numbness, tingling) in the neck, abdomen, chest and arms;
- pain in the head and heart;
- dizziness, tinnitus, flashing flies before his eyes;
- psycho-emotional disorders;
- poor sleep;
- failure of blood pressure (in the direction of both increase and decrease);
- limitation of movement and coldness in the upper limbs (pain when trying to raise the arm);
- pain when stooping.
First, the pain does not bother the person too much. This is a condition in which the first signs of osteochondrosis are already there, but still not too pronounced, doctors call "dorsalgia." It can last for months, but one day there will be a dagger pain, the chest as if clamped in a vice. A person will not be able to breathe and move normally. Such an exacerbation of thoracic osteochondrosis is called the special term “dorsago”. It can last 2 weeks and makes you suffer a lot of torment.
In chronic cases, developing radicular syndrome. At the same time, the area of the nerve of the spinal cord at the point of its exit from the spinal column is compressed by a deformed disc, which leads to the development of inflammation. Reduced sensitivity, impaired motor functions and muscular atrophy are added to the above manifestations.
It is difficult to recognize the disease, because many diseases (ulcer, heart attack, cholecystitis, pneumonia, gastritis) appear almost the same as osteochondrosis of the thoracic spine. Symptoms can be decoded incorrectly, and treatment in case of an error will not have an effect.
To identify the culprit of the disease, you will have to pass this examination:
- radiography of the spine and lungs;
- Ultrasound of the heart, kidneys and abdominal organs;
The doctor will see the exact picture of the disease on an X-ray photograph, where the growths in the body of the vertebrae and the displacement of the disks will be visible.
What kind of rescue measures will official medicine offer?
How and who will treat the spine? A complex therapy is being carried out, the purpose of which is to stop and prevent further destruction of the disks or restore their structure, to achieve improvement in the biomechanics of the spine, to eliminate disturbances in the work of the central nervous system. This is done by neuropathologists, chiropractors and osteopaths.
The first thing that will begin the treatment is the removal of pain, spasms and inflammation. To do this, carried out drug therapy with the help of such medicines:
- NSAIDs - Diclofenac, Ketorolac, Meloxicam, Ibuprofen, Nimesulide. They suppress pain, relieve inflammation in damaged roots. These drugs have many side effects and increase the risk of gastric ulcers, worsen blood clotting. Therefore, it is not necessary to resort to them often and on your own;
- glucocorticosteroids - Prednisolone, Dexamethasone. Hormones that produce an anti-inflammatory, anesthetic effect, have even more side effects than the above medicines;
- diuretics - Furosemide, Diakarb, Veroshpiron, Hydrochlorothiazide - to reduce swelling in areas where the nerve is injured;
- drugs that improve the metabolic processes in nerve cells - vitamins, Actovegin, Pentoxifylline, Thioctic acid;
- chondroprotectors restoring the cartilage of the discs - Glucosamine, Chondroitin sulfate.
When the pain is relieved, massage is used (it should be done by a highly qualified specialist), acupuncture, therapeutic physical training. Also used physiotherapy effects, which does not give undesirable effects, but provides a very good result. As a physiotherapy, the doctor may advise:
- electrophoresis with novocaine to reduce pain, improve blood circulation and relieve muscle spasm. Course - 10-20 procedures;
- exposure to ultrasound;
- magnetic therapy;
- vibroacoustic therapy;
- laser treatment.
Physiotherapy cannot be performed during pregnancy, mental disorders, skin diseases and malignant neoplasms.
Thoracic osteochondrosis: how to be treated at home?
Is it possible to completely abandon medical care, conventional medications and in order to defeat osteochondrosis of the thoracic spine, use home treatment? The answer is simple: "No!". To cope with such a serious illness, you should combine pharmacy medicines with herbal medicine.
The effect of self-made "drugs" in osteochondrosis is aimed at warming the muscles, reducing inflammation, pain and alleviating the condition. For such purposes, ointments and rubbing, including bee products and animal fat, are most suitable.
To alleviate the symptoms of osteochondrosis of the thoracic spine, treatment with folk remedies may include the following recipes:
- honey and honey compress. To make it simple: grate raw tuber, add honey (in a ratio of 1 to 1). Apply the composition to the sore area, cover it with cling film, cover it with a piece of cloth on top, tie it with a warm scarf or downy scarf, hold for 2 hours;
- rubbing radish. It will take ½ tbsp. honey, 5 tbsp. l vodka, 2 tbsp. l sea salt, 2/3 of Art. minced black radish. All components mix. A mixture of lubricate the affected area twice a day;
- nutria and wax fat balm. Melt 150 g of fat, add 2 tbsp. l natural wax, then pour 1 tbsp. l ammonia, remove the mixture from the fire. Pour it into a glass jar, cork, cool. Put in a cold place. As soon as the ointment hardens, it is ready for use.
The rules of life without pain
If osteochondrosis is detected, then it is very important to lead a correct lifestyle. At work, you must follow these simple rules:
- control your posture - keep your back straight;
- it is better to sit on a chair with a flat high back, which has a slope of 15˚ to 20˚;
- while working, the elbows should rest on the tabletop (and not "hang" in the void);
- you should take a break every 2 hours and have a back workout.
What to do at home? Use these guidelines:
- sleep on a hard bed;
- do not carry or lift weights;
- try not to hunch;
- if it is still necessary to transfer heavy objects, then distribute the weight on two hands;
- bag on one shoulder, change to a backpack;
- do gymnastics, move more.
Today, there are many effective methods of treatment of osteochondrosis of the thoracic. But all of them are good under this condition: they need to be used regularly, a course, and you should start practicing your back at the first signs of illness. Do not run the disease, be sure to do gymnastics, do not abuse the salt and more - at least sometimes break away from the TV and computer and take walks. Yet prevention is the best remedy for spinal diseases.