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About Your Neck
The neck is a complex part of the human anatomy. Many parts of the neck must function properly to have the flexibility and comfort to move in 6 directions. Learning about the parts of the neck and the purpose of each can shed light on neck problems and what causes them.
Anatomy of the Neck (Click to Enlarge)
The vertebrae (bones) in the neck form the top part of the spinal column (backbone) and protect the spinal cord. The spinal cord is a bundle of nerves that carries messages between the brain and the rest of the body.
The neck consists of joints, ligaments, nerves, tendons, and muscles. The neck muscles move in tandem with other muscles in the upper body, including the back, shoulders, and chest. Maintaining strength and flexibility in these muscles helps to prevents stiffness and weakness in the neck.
The structure of the neck includes:
Seven bones, called the cervical vertebrae, located at the top of the spine (backbone)
Disks, which are spongy padding between the vertebrae. These absorb shock from daily movement, exercise, and accidents.
Facets, or the joints between the vertebrae. Each vertebra has 2 sets of facet joints — 1 pair facing upward, and 1 pair facing downward. Facet joints occur on the back (posterior) side of the spine.
Ligaments, which connect the vertebrae to each other and stabilize the cervical spine
Muscles, which support the spine and provide movement of the head
Foramina, which are spaces between vertebrae that provide an opening for the nerves leaving the spine and going out to the various parts of the body
Interventional radiology is an area of medicine that is growing rapidly as an alternative to many conventional surgeries. Interventional radiologists are physicians who specialize in minimally invasive, targeted treatments performed using imaging guidance. Broward Health Imperial Point’s Interventional Radiologist, Dr. Linda Hughes, uses her expertise in reading X-rays, ultrasound and other medical images to guide small instruments such as catheters (tubes that measure just a few millimeters in diameter) through the blood vessels or other pathways to treat disease percutaneously (through the skin). Click here to read more about Dr. Linda Hughes and the various procedures she performs.
What are the advantages of interventional radiology?
- Interventional radiology procedures often replace open surgical procedures.
- Most procedures can be performed on an outpatient basis or require only a short hospital stay.
- The procedures performed are typically much less invasive than traditional surgery.
- Risk, pain and recovery time are often significantly reduced.
- The procedures are sometimes less expensive than surgery or other alternatives.
- General anesthesia usually is not required.
Angiography / Interventional Radiology
An angiogram is performed to get a much closer look at arteries or veins than is possible from other means. A long thin tube, or catheter, is guided through the artery to the area to be studied by using a contrast dye and x-rays. Broward Health Imperial Point offers a comprehensive array of interventional procedures including arteriograms, stents, stent grafts, vertebroplasty, uterine fibroid embolization, central lines, drainages, biopsies and angioplasty.
Interventional Neuroradiology is an exciting, minimally invasive approach in the treatment of vascular diseases of the central nervous system. Conditions that, in the past, would have required surgery such as aneurysms, vascular malformations, and tumors of the brain, head and neck can be considered for treatment by using an endovascular approach. Interventional techniques such as thrombolysis are also useful in the management of patients with acute ischemic stroke.
To schedule an appointment, call the Interventional Radiology department at 954-776-8824.