Degenerative Disc Syndrome

Degenerative Disc SyndromeDegenerative Disc Syndrome Treatment in North Phoenix Chiropractic and North Scottsdale Chiropractic Center

What is degenerative disc Syndrome? Degenerative disc syndrome is usually associated with age, but research has shown that previous injuries can predisposed a person to degenerative back disease or degenerative disc syndrome.  Degenerative disc syndrome is usually associated with arthritis conditions. Spinal discs are soft, compressible discs that separate the vertebra in your spine. The discs act as shock absorbers for the spine, allowing it to flex, bend, and twist. Degenerative disc syndrome can take place throughout the spine, but it most often occurs in the lower back and the lower part of the neck. Degenerative disc syndrome is also know as osteoarthritis, the breakdown of the tissue cartilage that protects and cushions joints.

What causes degenerative disc Syndrome and how is it treated?

Degenerative disc syndrome is connected with changes in the discs can result in back or neck pain associated with repeated minor trauma during the teenage years and early adult life, but can also be related to major trauma. It has been said that we are an accumulation of our traumas over our lifetime. As we age the disc, which is composed of cartilage, can degenerate resulting in degenerative disc disease in some people. The disc is made of cartilage and has poor blood supply. As we age the fluid content decreases making us more susceptible to degenerative disc syndrome. As we experience minor insults to our spine, such as when we lift wrong or twist, the load placed on our discs starts to break down the cartilage. As we age the fluid in your discs diminishes. This reduces the ability of the cartilage to act as a shock absorber and tends to degenerate under minor traumas leading to degenerative disc syndrome. When this occurs the space between the vertebrae become thinner and narrows the opening where the nerves come out. This can cause the body to build calcium around the joints, called bone spurs. In turn this may cause nerve damage or result in pain.

The most definitive tests for Degenerative Disc Syndrome are:

  • Plain radio-graphs
  • When x-rays are taken in an upright position the diagnostician can better view what gravity and weight bearing loads are placed on the spine.
  • Magnetic Resonant Imaging
  • The T2-weighted MRI, which is tuned for the hydrogen atoms found in water, shows what is called a “black” disc, when water is absent from the disc nucleus, which is normally bright and white in a healthy disc. This absence of water in disc is the key indication of both degenerative disc syndrome in the neck and lower back.

Degenerative Disc Syndrome:  Conservative Treatments

  • Chiropractic manipulation using flexion distraction
  • Acupuncture
  • Physiotherapy including muscle stimulation, ultra sound and laser
  • Physical therapy including ergonomic aids with corrective exercises
  • Nutritional support
  • Kinesio tape
  • Vertebral Distraction Pump

After a thorough examination and evaluation of your condition a treatment plan will be suggested for you as an individual that may include advice about key activity modifications such as sitting, bending, lifting or maintaining physical fitness. One of the most frequent factors associated with degenerative disc syndrome is muscle weakness or ‘deconditioning.’ Professional advice will be given to help you recuperate so you may resume your normal activities as soon as possible. Treatments are gentle, safe, natural, noninvasive and highly effective. Also, the treatments are designed to correct the root cause of your problem and not simply cover up the symptoms of degenerative disc syndrome that you experience.

 

this article on degenerative disc syndrome is informational and not to be used to diagnose or treat any medical condition

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