Cervical Trauma

Cervical Trauma Treatment in Orange County

Cervical spine trauma is a common problem with a wide range of severity from minor ligamentous injury.

Considerable force is needed to cause a cervical fracture, vehicle collisions and falls are common causes. A severe, sudden twist to the neck or a severe blow to the head or neck area can cause a cervical fracture. Penetrating neck injuries can also cause cervical fracture which can also cause internal bleeding among other complications.

The following general symptoms may be associated with a spinal tumor:

  • Pain in the neck or back, followed by neurological problems (such as weakness or numbness of the arms or legs or a change in normal bowel or bladder habits) is most common.
  • Focal spine pain that is worse in the morning.
  • Back pain along with constitutional symptoms, such as loss of appetite, unplanned weight loss, nausea, vomiting, or fever, chills or shakes.
  • Pain that does not diminish with rest, and pain that may be worse at night than during the day.

To help detect Cervical Tumors Robert Louis, MD conducts a neurological exam and may request for diagnostic imaging to find the exact location of cervical trauma causing pain from the neck down to the shoulders and arms.

Computerized tomography (CT Scan): CT scan may aid in determining the exact location of disc causing the nerve root and spinal cord compression.

X-ray: Application of radiation to produce a film or picture of a part of the body can show the structure of the vertebrae and the outline of the joints.

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI): Advanced cases of Cervical Osteoarthritis show abnormal signal within the spinal cord on MRI imaging. In case of atrophy of the spinal cord due to nerve cell loss, also referred to as myelomalacia, surgical outcomes may not be as promising.

Complete immobilization of the head and neck should be done as early as possible and before moving the patient. Immobilization should remain in place until movement of the head and neck is proven safe. Immobilization is important to minimize or prevent further spinal cord injury. Treatments that Dr. Louis will conduct include:

  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications are useful in decreasing swelling and pain.
  • In the long term, physical therapy will be given to build strength in the muscles of the neck to increase stability and better protect the cervical spine.
  • Collars, traction and surgery can be used to immobilize and stabilize the neck after a cervical fracture.

Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery
Robert Louis, MD specializes in minimally invasive spine surgery, wherein he incorporates his education, experience and training in cutting edge technology and instrumentation.

Robert Louis, MD, a fellowship-trained Orange County Neurosurgeon, is the Director of the Skull Base and Pituitary Tumor Program at Hoag Memorial Hospital in Orange County, California. Dr. Louis has particular expertise in endoscopic and minimally invasive treatment of brain and spinal conditions.

Dr. Robert Louis specializes in minimally invasive spine surgery for the treatment of Cervical Trauma. For appointments, please call (949) 383-4185 or Contact Us.