Bone Spur in Neck
What is a Bone Spur in the Neck?
A bone spur in the neck or any part of the spine for that matter, is a growth often brought on by a fracture of a vertebrae. The body will try to compensate by growing bone to help repair and relieve the pressure put on the spine, the result is what is a known as an osteophyte or bone spur.
Abnormal growth of bone spurs in the neck can cause both back and neck pain as they impinge upon the nerves and blood vessels in the cervical region. Bone spurs or osteophytes, from the Latin for bone (osteo) and -phyte, really means ‘plant’ but has acquired the meaning in medical terminology of an abnormal growth.
Why Bone Spurs in the Neck Occur
There are several reasons why osteophytes may occur, including abnormal cell division, pressure on the joints, cartilage degeneration, and osteoarthritis amongst others. Neck bone spur diagnosis is usually through MRI, or CT scans, or x-rays and may be incidental to the diagnosis of another condition as osteophytes are often asymptomatic. Treatments for neck bone spurs are usually conservative, unless the patient is suffering severe symptoms related to the bone spur growths then bone spur surgery may be an option.
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