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Treatment Options for Pinched Nerves in the Neck

by | Oct 20, 2023 | Back Physical Therapy, Neck & Back Injuries, Neck Injuries, Neck Physical Therapy, Uncategorized | 0 comments

cervical radiculopathy
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It is important to note that the majority of patients with pinched nerves in the neck (aka:

cervical radiculopathy) get better over time and do not need treatment. For some patients,

the pain goes away relatively quickly—in days or weeks. For others, it may take longer. It is

also common for cervical radiculopathy that has improved to return at some point in the

future. Even when this occurs, it usually gets better without any specific treatment.

In some cases, cervical radiculopathy does not improve, however. These patients require

evaluation and treatment.

Nonsurgical Treatment Options for Pinched Nerves in the Neck

Initial treatment for cervical radiculopathy is nonsurgical. Nonsurgical treatment options


Physical therapy. Specific exercises can help relieve pain, strengthen neck muscles, and improve range of motion. In some cases, traction can be used to gently stretch the joints and muscles of the neck.

Medications. In some cases, medications can help improve your symptoms.

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). NSAIDs, including aspirin, Ibuprofen, and naproxen, may provide relief if your pain is caused by nerve irritation or inflammation.

Oral corticosteroids. A short course of oral corticosteroids may help relieve pain by reducing swelling and inflammation around the nerve.

Steroid injection. In this procedure, steroids are injected near the affected nerve to reduce local inflammation. The injection may be placed between the laminae (epidural injection), in the foramen (selective nerve injection), or into the facet joint. Although steroid injections do not relieve the pressure on the nerve caused by a narrow foramen or by a bulging or herniated disk, they may lessen the swelling and relieve the pain long enough to allow the nerve to recover.

Narcotics. These medications are reserved for patients with severe pain that is notrelieved by other options. Narcotics are usually prescribed for a limited time only.

Nonsurgical Treatment Options for Pinched Nerves in the Neck

If, after a period of time, nonsurgical treatment does not relieve your symptoms, your doctor

may recommend surgery. There are several surgical procedures to treat cervical radiculopathy.

The procedure your doctor recommends will depend on many factors, including what

symptoms you are experiencing and the location of the involved nerve root.


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