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What are some facts about cervical spine nerves?

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Quick Answer

There are eight cervical spine nerves branching off the spinal cord, according to Spine-health, and each spinal nerve carries out specific bodily and sensory activities. Neck pain and other symptoms indicate problems with the cervical nerves. Injuries to the cervical nerves, such as cervical stenosis and herniated cervical disc, may also result in abnormal function of the associated body parts.

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Full Answer

The name of each nerve corresponds to the position on the cervical spine that it runs between, explains Spine-health. Cervical nerves relay messages from the brain and control the function of different body parts. For example, the nerve running between the second and third vertebrae is the C3 cervical nerve, responsible for controlling the diaphragm along with the C4, says Spine-health.

The first two nerves on the cervical spine, which control the head, are the C1 and C2 cervical nerves, notes Spine-health. C5 cervical nerves control the muscles of the upper body, such as the deltoids and biceps. Deltoids round and contour the shoulders, while the biceps flex and rotate the elbow and forearm, respectively. The C6 cervical nerves are responsible for the innervation of the biceps and wrist extensors. Triceps in the back of the arms, managed by C7 cervical nerves, help with arm straightening. C8 cervical nerves control the hands.

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