Cervical radiculopathy

J Am Acad Orthop Surg. 2007 Aug;15(8):486-94. doi: 10.5435/00124635-200708000-00005.


Cervical radiculopathy is a disorder involving dysfunction of cervical nerve roots that commonly manifests as pain radiating from the neck into the distribution of the affected root. Acute cervical radiculopathy generally has a self-limited clinical course, with up to a 75% rate of spontaneous improvement. Thus, nonsurgical treatment is the appropriate initial approach for most patients. When nonsurgical treatment fails to relieve symptoms or if a significant neurologic deficit exists, surgical decompression may be necessary. Surgical outcomes for relief of arm pain range from 80% to 90% with either anterior or posterior approaches.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cervical Vertebrae*
  • Humans
  • Immobilization / methods*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Orthopedic Procedures / methods*
  • Radiculopathy / diagnosis
  • Radiculopathy / therapy*
  • Treatment Outcome