A radiculopathy occurs when too much pressure is applied to a nerve. This can occur anywhere in the spine. Usually it is a herniated disc that is the source of the pressure but it can occur by other surrounding tissues — such as bones, cartilage, muscles or tendons. Click on this link for more information about herniated discs, About Herniated Discs This pressure disrupts the nerves function, causing pain, tingling, numbness or weakness. Symptoms will vary depending on the location of where the nerve is being pinched in the spine. If the compression occurs in the neck or lower back, pain will radiate down the arm or leg in the distribution of the nerve. If the compression occurs in the thoracic spine, pain will radiate around the ribs.
Treatment for a radiculopathy consists of medications, physical therapy, and injections. The injection that is used typically is an epidural.