Library: Upper Body

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Spinal Stenosis

Your spine is made up of a series of 33 bones, stacked like poker chips one on top of the other. There is a tunnel from top to bottom through which passes the spinal cord -- the nerve supply to the body. Spinal Stenosis happens when this hollow gets too small for the cord and closing in, begins to press on the cord.

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Tags: Upper Body, Back - Upper, Back - Lower, Ligaments, Tendons, Muscles, Back pain, Spinal Stenosis

Spasmodic Torticollis

Spasmodic Torticollis (ST) is a condition thought to be caused by a neurological disorder. It is not unlike having a permanent “cramp” in your neck muscles. Usually, because you are unable to move the neck you will hold it at an awkward angle causing one shoulder to be held higher than the other. It is not clear exactly what causes the condition so it is difficult to treat.

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Tags: Upper Body, Head, Neck, Neck & Shoulder, Shoulder, Muscles, Head - problems turning the head, Muscle sprain or strain, Neck / Shoulder problems

Wry Neck - Torticollis

Sometimes when you keep your head in a fixed position over a long period of time (studying, long drive, awkward sleeping position) this can cause a shortening of the neck muscles which may result in neck spasm. This is called Wry Neck or sometimes Torticollis. A spasm is similar to a cramp in that it does not allow you move your neck in the normal way and some movements are particularly painful.

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Tags: Upper Body, Neck, Neck & Shoulder, Muscles, Head - problems turning the head, Muscle sprain or strain, Neck / Shoulder problems

Whiplash

In a rear-end collision your head is often thrown violently backwards in relation to your spine. There will be usually be damage to your muscles, tendons, ligaments, bones and other soft tissue. The amount of damage depends on how hard the impact was and the condition of your neck before the impact. Damage will happen too if the impact is from the front or side as your head tends to be thrown in the direction from which the blow came.

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Tags: Upper Body, Head, Neck, Neck & Shoulder, Muscles, Head - problems turning the head, Muscle sprain or strain, Neck / Shoulder problems, Whiplash

Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is a condition most people are likely to suffer from, if they live long enough. It is simply part of the wear and tear of living. What happens is that the lining of your joints, once hard and shiny and an excellent gliding surface, begins to wear, crack and erode until the lining is gone and bone rubs directly off bone. Instead of the once smooth joint, the friction causes the bones to wear. Then the body responds automatically by trying to grow new layers of bone to replace the missing cartilage.

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Tags: Whole Body, Upper Body, Neck & Shoulder, Arms and Legs, Joints, Lower Body, Ligaments, Tendons, Muscles, Back pain, Osteoarthritis

TB of the Spine

Tuberculosis is a bacterial infection that attacks the lungs first but can also affect the spine. In the spine it attacks some of the bones in the middle or lower and sometimes upper back. The bones in the lower back are separated from each other by cushions (or discs) and the TB can eat into one of these causing the spine to bend sharply forward. When this happens it is called an angular Kyphosis.

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Tags: Upper Body, Neck, Back - Upper, Back - Lower, Spine, Neck / Shoulder problems

Ankylosing Spondylitis

Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS) is a condition that causes the body to attack itself. The lining of the joints is the first to be affected becoming hot and swollen, with the protective coverings of the joints and ligaments being worn down. It starts with the bottom of the back and eventually the joints fuse. This means that there is no movement in them and you become stiff. The pain moves upwards and the amount you can move your back or neck is greatly reduced.

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Tags: Upper Body, Neck & Shoulder, Back - Upper, Back - Lower, Arms and Legs, Joints, Lower Body, Ligaments, Ankylosing Spondylitis

Supraspinatus Tendinitis

Tendinitis is very common at the shoulder. This tendon is involved in all shoulder movements. It prevents downward drag on the arm as in carrying. The most painful movement involves moving the straight arm out to the side and up over the head. The middle part of this movement causes pain; from 45 to 160 degrees and lowering the arm from this position is also extremely painful.

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Tags: Upper Body, Neck & Shoulder, Shoulder, Arms, Tendons, Muscles, Dislocation, Muscle sprain or strain, Neck / Shoulder problems, Sports Injuries, Sprain, Tendinitis

Infraspinatus Tendinitis

Tendon attaches muscle to bone and is the focus for the “pull” of the muscle. When you damage it the muscle pulls part of the tendon away from the bone and the attachment point (or focus) becomes frayed and sore. While the tendons themselves are enormously strong (half the tensile strength of steel), the attachment to the bone is usually weaker and first to give. Tendinitis is very common at the shoulder.

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Tags: Upper Body, Shoulder, Arms and Legs, Tendons, Muscle sprain or strain, Neck / Shoulder problems, Sports Injuries, Tendinitis

Fracture - Shoulder

A fracture is another name for a break in the bone. There are 3 bones in the shoulder and these are held together by a complex series of muscles, tendons and ligaments. The shoulder joint is designed in such a way as to allow maximum flexibility. This flexibility must be severely limited in order for your fracture to heal after a break, and often a plaster cast is required to immobilise the arm and shoulder movement.

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Tags: Upper Body, Neck & Shoulder, Shoulder, Arms and Legs, Frozen Shoulder, Neck / Shoulder problems

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