How to treat osteochondrosis: causes and symptoms

how to treat osteochondrosis

Osteochondrosis is a common disease of the musculoskeletal system. It manifests itself as a slight discomfort and severe pain, limiting a person's activity. In advanced cases, the pathology can lead to the need for surgery and even disability. Prevention and prevention of the disease reduces the risk of its occurrence or helps to achieve positive treatment results.


Osteochondrosis is a pathology that occurs as a result of a combination of factors such as genetic predisposition, human lifestyle, environmental conditions.

The disease is characterized by damage to the articular cartilage, as well as the underlying bone tissue. Normally, cartilage is what provides the flexibility and mobility of the spine, but it can wear down, lose its properties, elasticity and deform under the pressure of other vertebrae.

The most common causes of development of pathology are:

  • hereditary predisposition.
  • Weakness of the muscular corset.
  • Postural disorders and scoliosis.
  • Mechanical injury of the spine.
  • Excessive physical activity.
  • Neuro-emotional stress.
  • Passive lifestyle.
  • Diseases of the gastrointestinal tract.
  • Tight uncomfortable shoes, high heels.
  • General dehydration.
  • Lack of important nutrients, beriberi.

Types of osteochondrosis


This disease is included in the list of the most frequent complaints of patients of working age who spend up to 8-10 hours a day at the computer. Often, patients do not attach importance to pain, which leads to the development of complications. If you do not want to feel constant pain in the neck, head, shoulders, it is important to do prevention as soon as possible, and if necessary, see a doctor as soon as possible.


The disease can be asymptomatic. It is often accompanied by pain in the back, neck, forearm. At an advanced stage, thoracic osteochondrosis is characterized by symptoms manifested by a painful condition of the hands and feet, tinnitus. Also, chondrosis in the chest can be accompanied by nausea, headache in the morning, pain and flickering in the eyes, sweating. To treat the disease, taking medicines and therapeutic exercises are sufficient measures.

Lumbar area

The lumbar spine is very vulnerable. If you are not engaged in strengthening the back muscles and do not monitor your posture, there is a risk of developing unpleasant symptoms. Chondrosia is characterized by pain in the lower back, pain in the hip area and so-called lumbago.

Take precautions. Keep your lower back warm, try not to overcool it. Do not carry or lift objects weighing more than 10 kg. If you are lifting something heavy, do not jerk or make sudden movements. Reject any physical work in an inclined position. If you are going to mop the floor, use a mop or bend down.

Stages and symptoms of osteochondrosis development

The disease goes through 4 stages, accompanied by various symptoms. In the initial stage, the pathology appears in the area of the pulpal nucleus of the intervertebral disc. Excessive load causes a decrease in disc height and the appearance of cracks in the annulus fibrosus. A person may feel a slight discomfort when he is in a static position for a long time or, conversely, when he moves very actively.

In the 2nd stage, the distance between the vertebrae continues to decrease, the spinal muscles and ligaments lose their tone and fall. This leads to increased mobility of the vertebrae with affected discs, risk of displacement or subluxations. In the second stage discomfort and pain appear, especially with certain types of loads or in certain positions.

With osteochondrosis of the 3rd degree, prolapse and protrusions of the intervertebral discs are formed, the development of joints of the intervertebral joints is possible. A person experiences stiffness, becomes inactive. At this stage of the pathology, the pain is clearly felt depending on the location of the damage.

In the 4th stage, the body tries to adapt to the functional disorders of the spine. This can be expressed in bone neoplasms - osteophytes. They act as a spinal stabilizer. But it can cause pinched nerves and other injuries.


When examining a patient and taking a souvenir, a specialist makes a primary diagnosis, indicating the presence of a disease by a visually detectable curvature observed in the transverse or longitudinal plane of the spine. After the initial consultation, the surgeon or neurologist may prescribe additional tests. After determining the localization of the disease and its stages, treatment can begin, the purpose of which is to get rid of the causes of pain.

The most common diagnostic methods:

  • x-ray?
  • CT?
  • MRI?
  • doppler ultrasound.

Treatment methods for osteochondrosis

Treatment brings good results only when it is regular, consistent and systematic. The therapeutic strategy of the first stage is aimed at neutralizing pain, the second stage is the activation of blood supply and metabolic processes in the affected areas of the spine, and the third stage shows physiotherapy and manual procedures.

With osteochondrosis of any part in the acute stage, accompanied by severe pain, the doctor can prescribe a paraspinal block by administering novocaine, lidocaine and other drugs to relieve muscle tension in the movement part of the spine, reduce swelling and tension ofmuscles.

Combinations of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, antispasmodics, analgesics and vitamin complexes (group D, nicotinic acid) are considered effective. As a local treatment, ointments are prescribed - chondroprotectors and agents with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory components.

It is important to remember that medications only help with severe pain at this time. Physiotherapy treatment helps to get rid of the unpleasant manifestations of the disease in the long term.

The most commonly used treatments include:

  • reflexology;
  • acupuncture;
  • electrophoresis?
  • manual therapy;
  • massage;
  • physiotherapy.

What does the lack of treatment lead to?

Osteochondrosis is best corrected at the initial stage of formation before the appearance of syndromes of spinal pathologies, which are accompanied by chronic headaches and pain in the shoulder blades, heart and lower back. Over time, the disease leads to a change in the overall structure of the spine due to the active compensatory expansion of connective, fibrous and bone tissue.

The clinical picture of the disease depends on the localization of the pathology, the degree of development of the process and the individual characteristics of the patients. Displacement of intervertebral discs, protrusions and hernias lead to unpleasant consequences.

Frequent events:

  • violation of blood circulation in the tissues.
  • pinched nerves;
  • dysfunction of the spinal canal.
  • swelling and tissue fibrosis.

Therefore, the treatment of osteochondrosis should be started as early as possible and carried out in a complex manner with an emphasis on neutralizing inflammation and eliminating pain. If the disease manifests itself for years, is in an advanced stage and a herniated disc is diagnosed, surgery may be required.


Prevention of osteochondrosis and its treatment are inextricably linked. Their goal is to improve the patient's quality of life. If you do a sedentary job, take regular breaks. Get up every hour and a half and do simple exercises that relieve tension in the neck and back muscles. Try to sit properly at the table: your back is straight, your shoulders are relaxed. Choose such chairs, the back of which can provide maximum support to the spine: so it will not be strained.

To prevent the appearance of the disease, it is advisable to periodically take a series of massage courses. Massage can improve blood circulation and lymph flow, enhance metabolic processes in muscle tissues and stop stagnant processes. As a result, there is an improvement in overall well-being, increased vitality and some painful symptoms disappear.

Recommendations for the prevention and prevention of the development of osteochondrosis:

  • Limit yourself when lifting weights. Allowed weight up to 10 kg.
  • Carry the weights evenly in both hands.
  • Regularly do simple exercises aimed at strengthening the spine, muscles, ligaments and joints.
  • Go swimming if possible.
  • Try not to sit for too long in one position.
  • Take food supplements that contain mucopolysaccharides - elements that make up cartilage.

Prevention of osteochondrosis of the spine is a less difficult task than its further treatment. Think about your health and start taking care of it before it reminds you of itself.