Signs of osteochondrosis in the cervical, thoracic and lumbar spine in men and women

Back and neck injuries, heavy physical exertion, sedentary lifestyle, pregnancy, old age - all these are the causes of diseases of the spine, the support of the human body. The symptoms of osteochondrosis, cervical, thoracic or lumbar, are different, so any, even subtle signs cannot be ignored. The sooner treatment begins, the sooner recovery will come. If you notice the first manifestations of the disease in yourself, consult a doctor and undergo an examination.

What is osteochondrosis

One of the most commonly diagnosed diseases of the spine is osteochondrosis, the signs of which occur in every third person after the age of 35. It mainly affects overweight elderly people, former athletes or workers whose professional activities are associated with heavy workloads. According to statistics from recent years, it is clear that the disease is getting younger. Girls and boys who prefer a sedentary lifestyle no longer surprise doctors with complaints of back pain.

Osteochondrosis is a disease of the spine in which a degenerative-dystrophic lesion of the intervertebral discs occurs. If left untreated, the vertebrae themselves begin to be destroyed, leading to disability, atrophy and paralysis of the limbs. Such a problem can also lead to a stroke, sciatica, kyphosis, protrusion. At the first signs of illness, it is necessary to seek medical help.

Each degree of this dystrophic spinal disorder is characterized by its own symptoms and signs. There are four phases in total. In the first phase, pathological changes occur, expressed in dehydration and reduction in the height of the intervertebral disc. On the other, relaxation of the muscles and ligaments of the vertebrae is fixed, spondylolisthesis (displacement, curvature of the disc) is diagnosed. The third phase is characterized by the appearance of prolapses and protrusions of the discs. In the last phase, there is a deformation of the vertebrae, on which grow bone growths - osteophytes.


The signs and symptoms of osteochondrosis depend on the stage of development. The type of disease also plays an important role. Osteochondrosis affects different parts of the spine: cervical, thoracic, lumbar. Some signs of the patient may not be related to the spine, for example, heart or headache, numbness of the fingers and toes. At the same time, the patient complains of pain or chest pain. It is very important to seek help at the hospital. Treatment of the disease lasts about 3 months, plus a year is given for rehabilitation.

The most common symptoms of osteochondrosis:

  • back pain between the shoulder blades;
  • dizziness;
  • feeling of a lump in the throat;
  • nausea;
  • loss of sensation in the limbs;
  • fever;
  • numbness of the limbs.
back pain with osteochondrosis

Cervical osteochondrosis

If we consider the signs according to the type of disease, then cervical spine problems are dangerous due to the proximity of the brain. Here there is a partial overlap of the blood vessels that carry blood to the head. Symptoms of osteochondrosis of the cervical spine are:

  • dizziness;
  • blurred vision;
  • noise in the ears;
  • "ecstasies" when walking;
  • pain in the back of the head, arms, shoulders.

Thoracic osteochondrosis

This type of disease affects the heart, which is why the patient begins to complain of such symptoms:

  • pain in chest, back, shoulders;
  • heart pain;
  • angina;
  • feeling of a lump in the throat;
  • shortness of breath attacks;
  • shortness of breath;
  • numbness of hands and feet.

Lumbar osteochondrosis

A disease that affects the lower part of the spine leads to problems with the pelvic organs. Sexual function suffers. Signs of lumbar osteochondrosis are:

  • pain in the buttocks, sacrum, lower back;
  • spasms of the muscles of the thighs, buttocks, buttocks;
  • shooting in the legs;
  • numbness of the limbs;
  • poor joint mobility;
  • exacerbation of diseases of the genitourinary system.
doctor examines the neck with osteochondrosis

Symptoms of wandering osteochondrosis

This concept means osteochondrosis, which develops in two parts of the spine, for example, cervicothoracic type of disease. In that case, the patient will feel painful signs that appear first in one place on the back, and then in another, ie. the place of pain will move. In that case, the patient can be diagnosed with a violation of the cardiovascular system, and even take medication to treat this problem, which cannot be done without a medical examination.

Signs of osteochondrosis

Depending on what the disease affects, doctors distinguish four groups of syndromes, each of which is characterized by its own symptoms. Osteochondrosis syndromes are as follows:

  • static syndrome. This concept refers to changing the shape of the spine. There is a violation of posture: the person begins to bend over, crouch, lower one shoulder below the other. Scoliosis occurs.
  • neurological syndrome. Disease affects the nervous system. The person complains of tingling, numbness. Neurological symptoms develop into complications in the form of paralysis or seizures.
  • vascular syndrome. This is about squeezing the blood vessels with vertebral extensions. This situation is often observed in the cervical form of the disease. The result is a disorder of blood circulation, starvation of the brain with oxygen, which leads to blurring, dizziness, nausea, hearing and vision loss. In thoracic or lumbar osteochondrosis, chronic ischemia of internal organs is observed.
  • trophic syndrome. It is characterized by insufficient tissue nutrition with essential substances. As a result, ulcers, inflammation and other defects appear on the skin.
neck pain with osteochondrosis

The first signs of osteochondrosis

In the initial phase of the disease, as in the last, the patient does not feel any discomfort. Only a doctor can identify a problem at this stage of development, for example, when diagnosing another disease or during a medical examination. Diagnostic methods are as follows:

  • X-ray of the spine in two projections, if necessary, X-ray of one vertebra;
  • magnetic resonance imaging (determination of intervertebral disc herniation, assessment of spinal cord condition);
  • discography (intervertebral disc examination);
  • electrophysical examination (determination of the degree of damage to the nerve pathways).