Wednesday, September 9, 2009

What causes cervical myelopathy

Do you feel a bit uncomfortable with your neck ,That indicates that you may have cervical spondylosis .There are many causes of cervical myelopathy; anything that interrupts the normal flow of neural impulses through the spinal cord may cause a clinical myelopathy. Some of the causes are trauma, viral processes, inflammatory or autoimmune disorders, tumor, or degenerative processes including spondylosis and intervertebral disc herniation.

It is the last group of causes that are of particular significance to the neurosurgeon or spinal surgeon. Cervical myelopathy secondary to degeneration is called “cervical spondylotic myelopathy” to indicate that spondylosis is the root cause of the syndrome.

The spinal canal is an enclosed bony tube through which the spinal cord runs. There are generally a few millimeters of fluid-filled space surrounding the spinal cord, which helps to protect it from trauma and allows for the considerable flexibility of the neck. Some people, however, are born with a smaller-than-average spinal canal; this is called “congenital cervical spinal stenosis”. Stenosis is a general term for narrowing.

The cervical spinal canal may become narrowed over time due to degenerative changes within the spine. Bone spurs (osteophytes), disc bulges, and thickened ligaments may develop and encroach on the spinal canal. In some cases, the space normally surrounding the spinal cord may be severely compromised and pressure on the spinal cord occurs.