Lumbar and Cervical Radiculopathy

upper and lower back painRadiculopathy is a term used to describe the irritation, injury, or compression of a nerve root. When the affected nerve is located in the lower back, this is called lumbar radiculopathy. Patients suffering from lumbar radiculopathy often report pain, numbness, discomfort, or stiffness in the lower back, buttocks, legs, and feet. When the affected nerve is located in the neck or upper back, this is called cervical radiculopathy. Patients suffering from cervical radiculopathy often report similar symptoms as lumbar radiculopathy but in the upper back between the shoulder blades and in the shoulders, neck, arms, and hands

The most common causes of lumbar and cervical radiculopathy are injury, a ruptured disc, degenerative changes (arthritis), and spinal narrowing. Initial treatment will usually be conservative, with a recommendation for physical therapy and pain management (usually corticosteroids, ibuprofen, or naproxen). If pain continues after some time, doctors may prescribe steroid injections to block nerve pain, or even surgery.

 

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MedStar Washington Hospital Center Medical-Surgical Unit Receives AMSN PRISM Award® for Exemplary Practice

Washington, D.C. – The 5E Medical Oncology/Hematology Unit at MedStar Washington Hospital Center has received the prestigious AMSN PRISM Award®, an honor recognizing exceptional nursing practice, leadership, and outcomes in hospital medical-surgical units.

The award, which stands for “Premier Recognition In the Specialty of Med-Surg,” is the first of its kind honoring med-surg nursing units in the United States and internationally. It is co-sponsored by the Academy of Medical-Surgical Nurses (AMSN) and the Medical-Surgical Nursing Certification Board (MSNCB). The award is given to outstanding acute care/med-surg units or adult/pediatric units classified as med-surg.

Andrea Melendez, MSN, RN, National Secretary of AMSN, presented the 5E Medical Oncology/Hematology team with the AMSN PRISM Award plaque during a ceremony Wednesday, August 14, on the unit. 

“I am so proud of the 5E team. This is such a phenomenal accomplishment,” said Tonya R. Washington, MSN, RN, senior vice president of nursing and chief nursing officer at MedStar Washington Hospital Center. “We are so delighted that their excellent team work, patient care and outcomes are recognized with this prestigious award.”

Hoping to inspire nurses to strive for the highest levels of patient safety and quality, AMSN and MSNCB launched the award in October 2012. The award also reflects the compassion, commitment, and connection that characterize med-surg nurses.

There are more than 600,000 medical-surgical nurses practicing in the United States today, making them the single largest group of specialty nurses working in hospital settings, according to AMSN. Med-surg nurses oversee a broad spectrum of patient care responsibilities, another reason the acronym “PRISM” was chosen for the award.

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MedStar Washington Hospital Center is a 912-bed, major teaching and research hospital. It is the largest private, not-for-profit hospital in the nation’s capital, among the 100 largest hospitals in the nation and a major referral center for treating the most complex cases. Its cardiology program is highly acclaimed and its cardiac surgery program has consistently earned the highest national rating–three stars–from the Society of Thoracic Surgeons. It also is a respected top facility in the areas of cancer, diabetes & endocrinology, Ear, Nose & Throat, gastroenterology & GI surgery, geriatrics, gynecology, nephrology, pulmonology and urology. It operates MedSTAR, a nationally-verified level I trauma center with a state-of-the-art fleet of helicopters and ambulances, and also operates the region’s only adult Burn Center.

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