Spondylosis Treatment in Israel
Spondylosis treatment in Israel is recommended when the development of symptoms disturb the patient's quality of life. In such cases, specialists Herzliya Medical Center, Israel’s leading private hospital, use conservative methods: medication treatment, auxiliary orthopedic accessories, physiotherapy, to treat the patient. If conservative treatment is ineffective, and the patient has distinct neurological symptoms, surgical involvement is advised. Modern minimally invasive surgical methods allow the reliable and safe elimination of spinal cord compression or nerve root compression caused by spondylosis.
Spondylosis is a disease caused by age-related changes in intervertebral discs. As a person ages, the spine discs lose their elasticity and their volume decreases. Degenerative processes in intervertebral discs are accompanied by changes in the vertebrae: they sprout growths (osteophytes), and eventually the adjacent vertebrae are fused together.
Spondylosis Risk Factors and Signs
Professional activity associated with repetitive movements in a certain part of the spine, or, on the other hand, prolonged immobility.
Spondylosis may develop in any part of the spine, but it most frequently affects the cervical area. The signs of cervical spondylosis, distinguishable by radiography, are noticeable in over 90% of people who are 65 or older, even though clinical manifestations of the disease may be absent.
Spondylosis treatment in Israel starts only in the cases when radiological signs of spondylosis are combined with distinct symptoms caused by spinal cord compression or compression of spinal nerve roots. The key signs of the disease are pain and a feeling of constraint or stiffness. For example, patients with cervical spondylosis have difficulty turning their head, nodding, etc.
Experts at the Department of Orthopedics at Herzliya Medical Center recommend seeking medical advice if the patient has at least one of the following neurological disorders:
- Numbness or tingling in upper or lower limbs.
- Muscle weakness.
- Coordination problems or change of gait.
- Loss of control over urethral or rectal sphincter.
Diagnosis of Spondylosis
The diagnostic procedures for spondylosis in the orthopedic department include the following examinations:
- X-Ray of the spine. The radiograph shows the osteophytes causing the development of stiffness. The radiograph also helps in differentiating spondylosis from other pathological conditions: tumors, fractures, etc.
- Computer tomography (CT). CT is a more advanced diagnostic technique, which allows the structure of the vertebrae to be assessed in detail and existing pathological changes to be identified.
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). MRI is necessary for evaluating the state of soft tissue, such as intervertebral discs, ligaments, spinal cord and nerves.
- Myelography, an imaging examination of the spinal cord involving a radiocontrast medium.
Diagnosis and treatment of spondylosis in Israel also include a nerve conduction examination and electromyography.
Spondylosis Treatment Methods
The spondylosis treatment plan is based on the severity and clinical condition of each patient. At early stages, the patient is prescribed pain relief medications (for example, non-steroid anti-inflammatory medicines) and physiotherapy. In addition to that, patients are recommended a set of muscle toning exercises to maintain muscle elasticity.
The Orthopedic Department at Herzliya Medical Center also practices traditional therapy – spine stretching, aimed at decompressing discs and nerve roots.
Conservative treatment of spondylosis in Israel may include additional measures:
- Medication therapy:
1. Myorelaxants, which relieve muscle spasms.
2. Anticonvulsants, which lowers pain intensity in the event of nerve compression.
3. Narcotic medications.
- Wearing braces. In the case of cervical spondylosis, it is advised to use a supporting neck brace, which takes the load off intervertebral discs. The neck brace should be worn for a limited amount of time, as its long-term usage may weaken neck muscles.
Should conservative treatment prove ineffective and neurological symptoms keep progressing, surgical intervention is advised. In Herzliya Medical Center, spinal surgeries are performed using minimally invasive methods, if the circumstances permit it. In the course of the surgery, the pressure on the spinal cord or the nerve roots is reduced by removing the dislodged disc, osteophytes or part of the vertebra.