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Degenerative Disc Disease: What You Need To Know!
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It’s one of the most common causes of lower back pain and pain clinic Denver, but there are many things you may not know about degenerative disc disease. This disease may be diagnosed by a pain management Denver and could be caused due to age.
So what is it? Degenerative disc disease is the change in the spinal discs over time. It can be caused by spinal discs losing fluid and reducing the space between each vertebra. This prevents discs from acting as shock absorbers and makes the disc thinner. This can cause grinding of the bones, which can cause serious pain, however it doesn’t always cause pain.
Degenerative disc disease can also be caused by tiny cracks in the outer layer of the disc. The fluid inside the disc will leak out of the cracks and cause the disc to bulge or rupture.
This disease is common in people who smoke cigarettes, or do a lot of heavy lifting. Overweight people are also known to experience symptoms of degenerative disc disease.
A misconception about degenerative disc disease is that it is a disease. It is not. Degenerative disc disease is really a condition that can produce pain from the damaged discs. Another misconception is that the pain from DDD will get worse over time. This is not necessarily true, as studies show that although degenerative disc disease will get worse over time, the pain might actually get better.
Degenerative disc disease can also cause osteoarthritis, a herniated disc or spinal stenosis. This disease often gets worse over time because discs are unable to repair themselves because of the minimal blood supply to the discs. Degenerative disc disease can also causes other conditions in the spine. These conditions include spinal stenosis, osteoarthritis, and spondylolisthesis.
If a patient has degenerative disc disease, they might experience the following symptoms:
1. Pain that flares up and then returns to lesser pain
2. Chronic pain
3. Less pain while walking or running, than sitting
4. The need to change positions often
5. Numbness or tingling in the buttocks or legs
Often times a Denver pain management doctor will perform an MRI to determine if the patient does have Degenerative Disc Disease. If the tests show disc dehydration, bulges or tears, the patient could be diagnosed with this condition.
Once degenerative disc disease is diagnosed by a Denver pain management doctor, they may recommend specific treatments. These treatments include intradiscal injections, facet blocks, medial branch blocks, radio-frequency ablation and stem cell therapy. These treatments may only alleviate the pain for a short period of time, but could also be successful in treating your condition for a longer period of time.
Denver pain management clinics have been able to treat 75% of patients with degenerative disc disease successfully without surgery. However, everyone’s treatment process is different. The treatment plan recommended by your pain management doctor depends on your condition, age and medical history.
If you are experiencing any symptoms of degenerative disc disease you should visit a Denver pain management clinic.
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