Degenerative Cervical Myelopathy

woman holding the back of her neck in pain

Degenerative Cervical Myelopathy (DCM) is a condition where ‘wear and tear’ arthritis (‘degenerative’) affects the part of the spine in your neck (‘cervical’), causing structural changes that compress and damage your spinal cord (‘myelopathy’). DCM is also known as 'cervical spondylotic myelopathy' or 'cervical stenosis’. DCM is a common disease, estimated to affect up to 5% of people over the age of 40. Despite this, there many questions regarding its cause and treatment that are not yet fully understood. Unfortunately, it is also disabling, with very few patients making a full recovery and therefore being left with problems such as pain, difficult using their hands or difficulty walking.

The Degenerative Cervical Myelopathy PSP was part of a wider international project, RECODE. RECODE-DCM stands for REsearch Objectives and Common Data Elements for Degenerative Cervical Myelopathy. The aim of the project was to improve efficient use of health care resources within the field of DCM by using a multi-stakeholder consensus process to define the DCM research priorities (the JLA PSP) and to develop a minimum dataset for DCM clinical studies, and confirm a definition of DCM.

The Degenerative Cervical Myelopathy Top 10 was published in May 2020. Watch the launch event here.

Key documents

Degenerative Cervical Myelopathy PSP Engagement Summary

Degenerative Cervical Myelopathy PSP Question Verification Form