Radicular Pain

Radicular pain occurs when the spinal nerve gets compressed (pinched) or inflamed. Intramuscular Stimulation (IMS) can help with this type of physical pain as it is used to decompress the spine and thus discs and nerves. Radicular pain radiates from your back and hip into your legs through the spine. The pain travels along the spinal nerve root. The leg pain can be accompanied by numbness, tingling, and muscle weakness.

Difference between Radiculopathy and Radicular Pain:

While radicular pain and radiculopathy are connected terms, they have particular implications.

Radicular pain happens when pain emanates from a compacted or inflamed nerve root. For instance, an inflamed nerve in the neck might transmit pain to the arm or hand.

Radiculopathy happens when a compact or inflamed root brings about neurological limitations, like numbness and or reflex issues.

Types of Radicular Pain:

The following are the three main types of radicular pain according to their locations.

  • Lumbar Radicular Pain
  • Thoracic Radicular Pain
  • Cervical Radicular Pain
  • Causes of Radicular Pain:

An assortment of elements can cause radicular pain. Here are some that might be at the base of the condition:

  • Compression.
  • Inflammatory condition.
  • Bone spurs.
  • Spondylosis.
  • Disc Herniation.
  • Spondylolisthesis.
  • Nerve root injuries.
  • Scar tissue from spinal surgery.

Risk Factors to Radicular Pain:

Some factors can improve the probability of creating radicular pain symptoms. These include the following:

  • Smoke
  • Obesity
  • Poor posture
  • Driving frequently
  • Mental stress
  • Unfortunate work fulfilment

Symptoms of Radicular Pain:

Radicular pain side effects will differ contingent upon every individual’s condition. Here are common instances of its symptoms:

Cervical Symptoms

Cervical radicular pain happens in the neck region in the nerves that branch out from the spine. It will deliver extreme pain to the upper region of the body. The symptoms include the following:

  • Neck pain
  • Pain that branches to the arms, shoulder, hands, and chest
  • Numbness in the shoulders, arms, hands, and fingers.
  • Muscle weakness

Thoracic Symptoms

Thoracic radicular pain happens in the upper portion of the spine, so side effects are bound to be felt in the upper torso. One might encounter the accompanying kinds of inconvenience:

  • Chest pain
  • Numbness or tingling sensation
  • Tight feeling in the chest
  • Pain that expands to the abdomen

Lumbar Symptoms

Lumbar radicular pain happens in the lower part of the back. Here are some of the side effects one might encounter with this condition:

  • Lower back pain
  • Pain that reaches to the legs and feet
  • Numbness in legs
  • Muscular weakness
  • Burning pain in hips


Radicular condition is difficult to analyse. Nerve damage isn’t apparent to the naked eye. Subsequently, a mixture of procedures is coordinated. For example,

Physical Exams and Physical Tests

A specialist might perform a physical test to determine muscle strength and reflexes. For instance, on the off chance that a patient encounters pain while moving a specific way, this will assist with recognising the impacted nerve root.

Imaging Tests

An assortment of imaging tests permits specialists to see the construction of the pain point. These include the following:

  • X-Ray
  • MRI
  • CT Scan
  • Electromyography


Radicular pain is difficult to manage, yet luckily, different treatments are accessible. These incorporate non-surgical and surgical cures as follows:

  • Restless Bed Rest
  • Avoid twisting movements
  • Quit smoking
  • Limit alcohol consumption
  • Maintain pain-free posture
  • Avoid lifting or pushing heavy objects
  • Follow proper rest after injury

Non-Surgical Treatment

Following are several surgical treatments.

Patients have a few non-surgical options to help treat their radicular pain.

  • Medications
  • Physical therapy including IMS
  • Traction

Surgical Treatment

There are a few surgical procedures that patients can consider.

  • Discectomy
  • Laminectomy
  • Laser debridement and facet thermal ablation

Pain is never easy to manage, so deciding the kind of pain one encounters could carry specialists nearer to tracking down a treatment plan. Radicular pain influences the nerves toward the back or neck region. It goes up the spinal nerve root and can be felt throughout the hips, legs, and spine. Radicular side effects incorporate numbness, trembling, and muscle weakness. The aggravation experienced can go from a dull pain to a sharp, consuming sensation.


Home. Beaumont. (n.d.). Retrieved May 30, 2022, from https://www.beaumont.org/services/pain-management-services/radicular-pain#:~:text=Radicular%20pain%20is%20a%20type,compressed%20(pinched)%20or%20inflamed.

Radicular pain and radiculopathy. Spine. (n.d.). Retrieved May 30, 2022, from https://www.spine-health.com/glossary/radicular-pain-and-radiculopathy

Radicular Pain: Signs and symptoms: Treatment: J.flowers health. J. Flowers Health Institute. (2022, March 21). Retrieved May 30, 2022, from https://jflowershealth.com/radicular-pain/

Vandebriel, D. (n.d.). Radiculopathy. Physiopedia. Retrieved May 30, 2022, from https://www.physio-pedia.com/Radiculopathy

* Contact Reach Physiotherapy for a list of references used for this blog content.