Osteochondrosis of the thoracic spine is a disease in which changes or disorders of bone tissue occur that destroy disks and ligaments in the chest area. Sedentary work, a sedentary lifestyle, congestion of the spine, stoop, poor posture - all these factors are highly likely to lead to the development of the disease.
Thoracic osteochondrosis occurs less frequently than similar disorders in the cervical or lumbar spine. This is due to the lower mobility of the bones and joints of this area.
Due to the fact that the chest has a convex shape, the load on the bones and joints is unevenly distributed. The proliferation of processes in the bones often begins in the part that has more stress - on the front wall of the department.
However, it is impossible to start or, even more so, ignore the disease, because the negative consequences of the further development of osteochondrosis can significantly affect a person’s lifestyle. Treatment of the disease can only be prescribed by a doctor.
Diagnosis of the disease
Only a specialist can diagnose osteochondrosis of the thoracic spine, determine the degree of its development and prescribe how to treat the patient. But there are a number of symptoms by which a person can assume the presence of the disease in himself. It can be:
- pain between the shoulder blades and in the left side of the chest;
- pain in the stomach and heart;
- increased pain during deep inspiration;
- numbness in the chest.
Since these symptoms may be due to some other diseases, the doctor must conduct a comprehensive diagnosis to confirm the assumptions about the diagnosis. The complex of hospital studies usually includes:
- chest x-ray;
- Magnetic resonance imaging;
- ultrasound examination of internal organs;
- electrocardiography, etc.
Only by excluding all possible concomitant diseases, the doctor can make the final diagnosis - osteochondrosis. If any other disorders were found in the body during examinations, this must be taken into account when deciding how to treat thoracic osteochondrosis so as not to aggravate the situation.
Treatment of osteochondrosis
Treatment of diseases of the thoracic spine, first of all, should be aimed at reducing pain in the chest area. Therefore, most often the process of eliminating the problem includes taking medications, manual therapy and therapeutic exercises to relieve pressure on the discs. It is not recommended to treat thoracic osteochondrosis on your own, only after consultation with a specialist.
If osteochondrosis worsens, sharp pains in the back appear, the patient can be treated only after the pain has subsided. In this case, bed rest is indicated until the patient's condition is relieved. In addition, the doctor may prescribe a few more procedures that can enhance the effect of drugs and provide effective treatment:
- stretching of the discs of the spine;
- vacuum therapy;
- inductometry, etc.
All these procedures cannot cure the patient completely, but, of course, they will have a positive effect on the treatment of the disease.
Spinal stretching is used during an exacerbation of the disease and helps relieve pain by easing the load on the discs. This procedure can be carried out only under the supervision of a doctor and according to his recommendations.
Acupuncture is a method that has recently become more and more popular in the treatment of osteochondrosis, helps relieve pain in the thoracic spine, as well as normalize the immune system.
In extremely rare cases of advanced disease, surgery may be necessary. The decision to perform the operation is made by the patient together with the doctor, if gymnastics and manual therapy cannot alleviate the condition of the thoracic spine.
Therapeutic gymnastics involves a set of exercises, the main purpose of which is to strengthen the muscular corset of the thoracic region. The types of exercises are developed by the complex and are available to every person who has been prescribed physiotherapy exercises to solve the problem of thoracic osteochondrosis.
It is a mistake to assume that gymnastics is harmless, and therefore you can prescribe it yourself. Exercises can be started only when the cause of the disease is clear and treatment of osteochondrosis is started. But proper and specially designed gymnastics can significantly affect the healing process.
Drug treatment of the disease involves taking anti-inflammatory and analgesic drugs. In addition, the doctor should prescribe drugs that restore cartilage tissue and a complex of vitamins aimed at strengthening bones and ligaments. However, their application is possible only in combination with other methods of eliminating the problem.
An innovative way to treat osteochondrosis is an anti-inflammatory patch, which helps to solve many problems of the spine. Its application to the chest area allows you to reduce pain, relieve inflammation and improve blood circulation in a certain part of the spine.
The most effective treatment for a disease such as osteochondrosis involves the use of manual therapy. The actions of a specialist will help activate and enhance the supply of oxygen to the tissues of the intervertebral discs, as well as help the work of blood vessels and improve lymph flow. This allows you to restore the normal functioning of the thoracic region, stop the development of osteochondrosis and cure the patient.
Effective treatment of osteochondrosis of the thoracic spine is possible with the use of a set of actions and measures.
Prevention of thoracic osteochondrosis
No matter how timely and effective the treatment of the disease is, in any case, it is easier to engage in prevention. After all, it is better to prevent osteochondrosis than to spend time, effort and money to cure the disease.
Preventive measures recommended by doctors include:
- strengthening the muscles of the spine and preventing excessive load;
- avoiding hypothermia;
- after getting wet in the rain or sweating in the gym, you should immediately change into wet clothes and wear only dry clothes;
- strengthening gymnastics during sedentary work;
- regular back massage course (at least once a year).
A strong corset of the thoracic spine will guarantee good health and comfortable mobility for many years. Prevention of any disease of the musculoskeletal system is much easier and takes less time than treating the violations that have arisen later. Do not neglect the advice of doctors, it is better to lead an active lifestyle. Then health will always be strong.