Osteoarthritis of spine is also common as other hip osteoarthritis and knee osteoarthritis. However it has different way of diagnose and show different symptoms. Osteoarthritis of the spine occurs when the cartilage of joints and discs gets breakdown in the neck and lower back. Osteoarthritis sometimes produces spurs which put pressure on the nerves leaving the spinal column. This may lead to pain and weakness in the arms or legs.

Doctors generally call osteoarthritis in the spine as spinal arthritis. Spinal arthritis is common and is prone to occur in people who are above the age of fifty. It is represented as continuous, degenerative process in the spine that may be linked with a number of other degenerative spinal conditions. it usually develops when the person get older. However younger people may also get affected by it due to some of the reasons as:

  • Injury or trauma to spinal joint
  • Genetic defect involving cartilage

Symptoms of Osteoarthritis of the spine:

It can cause pain and stiffness in the neck or back. It can also cause numbness or weakness in the legs or arms in case it is severe to affect spinal cord or spinal nerves. Generally the back discomfort is relieved on lying down. Some people experience slight interference in their activities of lives. However some become more severely disabled.

Diagnose of spinal osteoarthritis:

The best method to diagnose osteoarthritis is X-ray. Firstly the doctor will ask the medical history and then he or she will perform a physical exam to detect any pain, tenderness or lost mobility involving the lower back or neck. Along with this doctor can order some tests to diagnose of o spinal osteoarthritis as:

  • X-rays to detect bone damage, loss of cartilage or disc and bone spurs. But the X-ray does not show early damage to cartilage.
  • Blood tests to evaluate other disorder: Blood tests can help to detect the presence of other arthritis types showing similar symptoms as osteoarthritis.
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI): it can reveal the possible damage to discs or thinning of areas where spinal nerves leave. It provides more clear diagnose.

Osteoarthritis of the Spine can be treated to relieve its symptoms by using medicines, surgery or physical therapies. Following a healthy lifestyle can also help a lot to live comfortable life in this condition.  You can ask your doctor about the ways to manage lifestyle so as to ease the symptoms of spinal osteoarthritis.