A nerve root can become irritated from either a disc herniation or a bone spur, and when that happens, they can give you different patterns of symptoms radiating down your arm. An irritated nerve root can cause pain, numbness, tingling and even cause you to lose some of the strength of your arm.
The most common levels of disc herniation are C4/5, C5/6 and C6/7. Following are common symptoms of pain you may experience in each. Please keep in mind that these are typical pain patterns associated with a cervical disc herniation, they are not absolute.
• A C4/5 disc herniation would cause weakness in the deltoid, and the pain would radiate to the shoulder.
• A C5/6 disc herniation would cause weakness in the biceps, and the pain would radiate out of the back of the neck, to the biceps, forearm, and then to the index finger and thumb.
• A C6/7 disc herniation would cause weakness in the triceps, and the pain would radiate out of back of the neck, to the triceps, forearm, and then to the long or ring finger.
A cervical herniated disc is diagnosed when the inner core of a disc in the neck herniates, or leaks out of the disc, and presses on an adjacent nerve root. It usually develops in the 30-to-50-year-old age group. While a cervical herniated disc may originate from some sort of trauma or neck injury, the symptoms commonly start spontaneously.
For more information and a consultation, please feel free to contact my office at your earliest convenience. Contact us today!
Dr. Stephen P. Courtney, M.D.
Stephen P. Courtney, M.D. is a board-certified, fellowship trained orthopedic spine surgeon by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery and the founder of the spine division at Plano Orthopedic Sports Medicine and Spine Center. He has been practicing medicine in Plano since 1995 and has developed his practice exclusively for neck and back disorders.
Dr. Courtney has been Chief of Orthopedic Surgery at the Medical Center of Plano and a member of the hospitals Executive and Operating Room Committees.
Selected as one of Dallas’ Best Doctors by D Magazine, Dr. Courtney is known for his straight-forward, honest approach and operates only if clearly indicated with proven techniques which has earned him an excellent reputation among his professional colleagues, medical peers and patients.
Dr. Courtney is a member of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, North American Spine Society and the Texas Spine Society.