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Neck and Nerve Pain

As a physiotherapist, I’ve encountered numerous cases of neck pain, and I understand just how frustrating it can be for my patients. Waking up with neck pain that seemingly came from nowhere is like stepping into a pothole on a familiar street. But what if this neck pain isn’t just a passing inconvenience? What if it’s a symptom of something more complex, like cervical radiculopathy?

Cervical radiculopathy is a condition that occurs when a nerve in the neck becomes compressed or irritated, leading to pain, numbness, tingling, or weakness that radiates down the arm. It’s often caused by age-related changes in the spine, such as herniated discs or bone spurs, but it can also result from injury or trauma.

One of the challenges with cervical radiculopathy is that its symptoms can mimic those of other conditions, making it difficult to diagnose without proper medical evaluation. However, there are some telltale signs to watch out for, including sharp pain that travels from the neck down the arm, numbness or tingling in the fingers, and weakness in the muscles of the arm or hand.

Living with cervical radiculopathy can significantly impact one’s daily life and mobility. Simple tasks like turning the head or lifting objects may become challenging, and disrupted sleep due to pain can exacerbate the situation.

Fortunately, my role as a physiotherapist allows me to offer a range of treatments to help manage cervical radiculopathy and alleviate symptoms. These may include tailored exercise programs to improve neck strength and flexibility, manual therapy techniques to relieve muscle tension and improve joint mobility, and education on posture and ergonomic adjustments to minimise strain on the neck.

In more severe cases, collaboration with other healthcare professionals, such as orthopedic surgeons or pain specialists, may be necessary to explore options like corticosteroid injections or more rarely surgical intervention to decompress the affected nerve.

If you’re experiencing persistent neck pain or symptoms suggestive of cervical radiculopathy like tingling or weakness, seeking professional help from a physiotherapist is crucial. The vast majority of neck pain and nerve compression can be helped with early intervention and a comprehensive treatment plan tailored to your specific needs.


Author – Profile Mona Vale Adam HorwitzAdam Horwitz (Mona Vale)

Adam is interested in holistically treating neck pain, headaches and migraines. He likes to use manual therapy in combination with strength training to address any deficits that may be contributing to injury risk or causing a person’s pain.

Adam likes going go to the gym and training in Brazilian Ju-jitsu. From these he has a deep understanding of gym-based activities like weightlifting and crossfit as well as martial arts in general.

Click here to learn more about Adam.