Degenerative Disc Disease
Degenerative disc disease in the lumbar spine, or lower back, refers to a syndrome in which a compromised disc causes low back pain.
Although there is a slight genetic component to individuals who suffer from DDD, the true cause is probably multifactorial. It could be from simple wear and tear, or may have a traumatic cause.
Degenerative disc disease is a condition in which the cushions within the spine (discs) deteriorate with time and cause:
- A reduction in the space between each vertebra
- Compress nerve roots
- Cause pain.
Intervertebral spinal discs serve as a cushion for pressure upon impact and movement. They’re composed of a gel-like center and a cartilage shell exterior. With age and time, cartilage deteriorates, and discs dehydrate.
It is considered more as an aging process rather than a disease itself. However, when discs degenerate, they may reduce in height causing compression symptoms and pain.
Pain is commonly expressed in the neck and lower back region. Again, these are the weight bearing areas of the spine with the most movement range.
Pain is usually radiated to the:
- It could improve with changes in posture in some cases and can be seen as unilateral affecting only one side.
At My Spine Center, you’ll find the highest levels of patient care. Our treatments are aimed at minimizing your pain with minimally invasive procedures that may improve your symptoms and quality of life and are completely reversible.
For the correct diagnosis of Degenerative disc disease (DDD), it is important to have a current image study to complement the physical exploration of your symptoms.
Conservative measures are the first line of treatment, which include exercises, posture modifications, medications and good lifestyle habits to decrease the stress to your spine, including weight loss and quitting smoking.