Deuk Spine Full Logo
Free MRI Review

Neck Pain Management: Best Treatments for Neck Pain

Author:  
Dr. Deuk
An expert in all things spine, Dr. Deukmedjain is a board certified neurosurgeon who has performed thousands of minimally invasive surgeries and procedures including the revolutionary Deuk Laser Disc Repair and the Deuk Spinal Fusion. 

Neck pain is a common condition that affects millions of people in the United States. It can be caused in several ways, such as accidents, osteoarthritis, poor posture, physical stress, and other medical concerns. 

Neck pain is usually an indication of a more serious issue. Fortunately, several treatments are available to relieve neck discomfort and chronic pain to prevent it from recurring.

This article, therefore, discusses everything you need to know about neck pain management and the best treatments for neck pain. 

What is Neck Pain?

Neck pain is the discomfort in or around the cervical spine, located around the spine beneath your head. Neck pain can be acute (lasting only a few days or up to six weeks) or chronic (lasting longer than three months to years). If left untreated, it can interfere with daily activities and reduce your quality of life. 

Neck pain occurs when a traumatic injury of a disc in the spine causes an annular tear to form. Pressure on the disc causes herniation of the nucleus pulposus through the annular tear. This causes inflammatory tissue to develop within the annular tear that generates pain signals, which is what we recognize as neck pain. 

What Causes Neck Pain?

The video below explains what causes neck pain:

Because your neck is flexible and carries the weight of your head, it is susceptible to injuries and disorders that cause discomfort and impede movement. The common causes of chronic neck pain include: 

  • A muscular strain: This happens when a muscle is stretched too far and eventually tears. Neck muscle strain is most often caused by inadequate postures, such as sleeping on your neck in an uncomfortable position. Even minor activities, such as reading in bed, can strain neck muscles.
  • Nerve compression: Herniated discs or bone spurs in your cervical vertebrae can lead to neck pain.
  • Injury: Whiplash is caused by a rapid, forceful movement of the neck or head followed by a rebound in the opposite direction. Trauma injuries can damage the muscles, ligaments, discs, vertebral joints, and nerve roots in the spinal cord in the neck.
  • Mental stress: Mental stress can result in tightening your neck muscles due to tension and is a major cause of neck discomfort and stiffness. Using your neck muscles excessively during repetitive or difficult tasks can also cause stiffness and soreness.

Common Neck Pain Symptoms

One or more of the following symptoms and signs are commonly associated with neck pain:

  • Muscle tightness and spasms
  • Stiff neck and sharp pain
  • General soreness
  • Radicular pain
  • Headaches

Imaging Tests for Neck Pain

Neck pain can be a symptom of a serious spine condition. For this reason, a diagnosis of the source of your pain should be performed. To identify the cause of your neck discomfort, your doctor will perform a series of exams and tests.

To begin, your doctor will examine and ask you questions about your symptoms. They may also inquire about any past accidents, therapy, or activities that may have contributed to your neck pain. During the physical exam, your doctor will assess your neck mobility, as well as your arms and hands for numbness, tingling, or weakness. 

Imaging tests may also be required to determine the reason for your neck pain. They are helpful, especially when the root of your pain is unknown, non-surgical treatment has not improved your condition, or there are signs of nerve damage. The imaging tests options available include:

  • X-ray test: An X-ray is a quick and painless diagnostic that captures images of the structures inside your body, specifically your bones. For neck discomfort, an X-ray can show narrowed disc space (spinal stenosis), fractures, bone spurs (osteophytes), or osteoarthritis.
  • A computed tomography (CT) scan: A CT is a non-invasive medical imaging method used in radiology to produce comprehensive internal pictures of the body for diagnostic reasons. It assembles a sequence of X-ray pictures from various angles around your body to show a bulging disc or a herniated disc, but it provides a 360 degree view of the body structures you’re looking at. 
neck-pain

Source

  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) test: MRI is a form of imaging diagnostic procedure that gives detailed images of nearly every structure and organ in the body. MRI uses magnets and radio waves to produce images that indicate the source of your neck pain. If you have a recent MRI or CT-Scan, the Deuk Spine Institute and our team of doctors will review it for free and provide a customized plan on how to eliminate your pain.
  • Myelogram: A myelogram is a diagnostic imaging examination often performed by a radiologist. It examines the spinal canal, nerve roots, and other structures using a contrast dye and X-rays or computed tomography (CT).

When to see your doctor about neck pain

Most neck pain improves gradually over time and is treatable at home. However, if severe neck pain persists, seek immediate care from your doctor. 

Consult a doctor if you are experiencing:

  • Severe pain
  • Pains persist for several days without relief
  • Pains spread down arms or legs 
  • Pains associated with a headache, numbness, weakness, or tingling

Non-Surgical Treatments for Neck Pain

Usually, surgery is not the first treatment needed to alleviate neck pain. Neck pain is frequently treated successfully with a mix of the following:

  1. Physical Therapy: One of the most common treatments for chronic neck pain is physical therapy. Physical therapy involves the use of therapies to alleviate pain or stiffness. Even if the pain cannot be alleviated, physical therapy can help improve neck posture and function for everyday activities. There are two forms of physical therapy: passive physical therapy and active physical therapy.
  1. Epidural Steroid Injections: A cervical epidural steroid injection is a medication injection put into the area of your neck surrounding your spinal cord. It is used to treat pain, tingling, and numbness in the neck, shoulder, or arm. 
  1. Facet joint injections: Facet joints link the vertebrae or spine bones. They aid in the movement of your spine. A cervical facet injection is a therapeutic technique in which a damaged facet joint in the neck is injected with steroids to relieve discomfort. An x-ray is used to guide the procedure. If your facet joint injection is effective, you should be pain-free for several months. 
  1. Cervical radiofrequency ablation: Cervical radiofrequency ablation is an alternative to surgery. It is used to treat persistent neck pain caused by cervical spine problems. The technique entails altering neurons that send pain signals to your brain.
  1. Relief exercises: Exercise can help relieve neck pain. Exercises and stretches can help to strengthen and loosen muscles, relax a stiff neck, relieve discomfort, and increase flexibility.

Surgical Treatments Options For Neck Pain

Although surgery is a potential treatment for chronic neck pain, it’s rarely the first option. Surgery is explored when non-surgical treatments have failed to relieve neck discomfort.

Likewise, not all reasons for neck discomfort necessitate surgery. Conditions that may necessitate surgery are frequently the consequence of an accident or age-related degenerative changes in your neck, such as osteoarthritis, herniated discs, and bone spurs. 

Here are some of the most common surgeries for neck pain:

1. Laminectomy

neck-pain-laminectomy

Source

Frequently performed alongside a Foraminotomy and/or traditional spinal fusion, a laminectomy involves removing parts of the lamina in the spine that may be compressing the spinal cord or spinal nerves. 

Typically involving a large incision and the moving of muscle, skin, and ligaments, laminectomy surgery enables surgeons to relieve pressure on the spinal cord or nerves by removing the lamina bone or bone spurs. The problem with this method is that it causes collateral damage to soft tissues in the area to reach the problematic region.

The patient must be placed under general anesthesia and remain sleeping during the procedure to undergo this surgery. Because of open back surgery and bone removal, laminectomy is considered a fairly invasive medical treatment. 

Fortunately, the necessity for traditional laminectomies has been eliminated at Deuk Spine Institute with the minimally invasive laser surgery, which dramatically boosts success rates, eliminates complications, and reduces the number of time patients spend in recovery.

2. Spinal fusion 

Spinal fusion surgery can be done to treat painful disc herniations. This surgery is far more invasive than laser spine surgery or discectomies. The outcomes of fusion are better for treatment of back pain and neck pain when compared to discectomy because the fusion stops movement at a painful joint. 

Fusions are harder for spine surgeons to perform properly and many spinal fusions are done with poor planning and technique resulting in bad outcomes for the patient. You can see a comparison of cervical fusion to Deuk Laser Disc Repair here:

3. Artificial Disc Replacement Surgery

Artificial disc replacement surgery, also known as total disc replacement, is a recent therapeutic option for back and neck discomfort caused by lumbar degenerative disc degeneration. 

It entails removing a deteriorated or painful disc and replacing it with a device designed to replicate the function and motion of that disc. These discs facilitate mobility in the spine and keep the vertebrae from rubbing against one another.

neck-pain

Source

Total disc replacement can be performed on the neck and is advised when prolonged non-surgical pain management measures have failed.

The Most Effective Surgical Treatments For Neck Pain

1. Deuk Laser Disk Repair

Deuk Spine Institute is the world leader in Laser Spine Surgery. Dr. Ara Deukmedjian, founder of Deuk Spine Institute, developed the world's most advanced laser spine surgery. This laser spine surgery is known as Deuk Laser Disc Repair.  

Deuk Laser Disc Repair is used as an alternative to dangerous invasive surgeries like total disc replacement and spinal fusion. Deuk Laser Disc Repair is a form of endoscopic spine surgery performed in a state-of-the-art outpatient surgery center under sedation while the patient relaxes. This procedure does not compromise or weaken the health and integrity of the spine.

In over 15 years of performing this procedure and with over 1,300 patients treated, there has been a 95% success rate with no complications in any patient.

How Deuk Laser Disk Repair Works

To get started, Deuk Laser Disc Repair requires a very small incision, less than a quarter inch long. A cylindrical rod called a dilator is inserted in the small opening to gently spread the muscle to create a small passage and guide through which the surgery is performed endoscopically. The tip of the dilator is advanced into the symptomatic disc through the tear in the annulus where the herniation originates, and a tube called the retractor slides over the dilator and is carefully positioned into the painful disc. The rest of the entire Deuk laser disc repair surgery will occur inside this narrow tube.

To access the spine, an endoscopic camera is inserted into the tubular retractor to allow the surgeon to guide the laser inside each symptomatic disc. This process ensures that bones and surrounding tissues are not damaged, unlike traditional spinal fusions, microdiscectomy, and artificial discs.

The Holmium YAG laser used in the Deuk laser disc repair is manipulated accurately with millimeter precision under endoscopic visualization to remove only painful inflammatory tissue from the disc. The laser is precisely used to remove damaged disc material that is causing the pain. 

Once the laser has removed the inflamed painful part of the annular tear and the herniated nucleus pulposus, the endoscope and tubular retractor are removed, leaving less than one-quarter inch incision in the skin, which can be closed with a single stitch and a band-aid.

Testimonials from patients: "The surgery only takes about 1 hour. Throughout the entire operation, I did not feel a thing. I woke up and all my pain was gone. I am walking better than I have in years."

"It was such a wonderful professional experience. Dr Deuk is the best in the world. I only have a little pimple-sized incision and absolutely no scars. My full range of motion is back and I can not wait to go back to dancing and all the things I have been so nervous about. I could cry, I am so happy."

Link to testimonial video from Deuk Laser Disk Repair patients

Manage & Treat Your Neck Pain 

At Deuk Spine Institute, we are dedicated to helping patients achieve freedom from chronic pain. With a 95% success record in pain elimination, the services we provide are unique in the world, and our therapies are curative rather than palliative. Not only that, our physicians are engaged in each and every patient's well-being and have spared no cost to provide the finest possible outcomes.

If you are experiencing chronic neck pain, send us your MRI scan for a free review or schedule an in-person appointment at our clinic in Florida, and we can determine the best options for you.

Cure your back and neck pain once and for all.

Deuk Laser Disc Repair has patients back on their feet within an hour, feeling zero pain
Speak With a Surgeon
Want A Free 
MRI Review?
Our world-class surgeons at Deuk Spine Institute are standing by to review your MRI and provide a recommendation on the best way to get you out of pain, permanently. 
Start Your Free MRI Review
Dr. Deuk on a transparent background
About Deuk Spine Institute
World leader in Laser Spine Surgery
With world-class physicians on staff, the newest and most advanced technology, and a patient experience pathway that is unrivaled in it’s efficiency and and pedagogy of care, Deuk Spine Institute has performed thousands of procedures and achieves a 95% success rate in elimination of pain.

 The services we offer are not offered anywhere else in the world, and the treatments are curative, not palliative.  On top of that, Dr. Deukmedjian is personally invested in the well-being of each and every patient, and has spared no expense to guarantee the best possible outcomes.
Schedule Your Consultation
Viera: 7955 Spyglass Hill Rd Melbourne, FL 32940

Titusville: 494 N Washington Ave Titusville, FL 32796
© 2021 Deuk Spine Institute