Degenerative Disc Disease

Degenerative disc disease is a condition in which the tissue that forms the intervertebral disc begins to deteriorate resulting in serious pain. While it is normal for discs to deteriorate through the process of aging, experiencing intense pain is not.

The degeneration in the spine’s discs becomes painful when the discs are unable to properly absorb shock for the vertebrae in the spinal column. This can make flexing, bending, twisting and any other activity that causes the spine to bend extremely uncomfortable and painful. Additionally, serious cases of degenerative disc disease can apply pressure to the spinal cord and nerves, which can lead to more pain and impaired nerve function.

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Causes, Signs & Symptoms

Where the pain originates is highly dependent upon where the damaged disc is in the spinal column. Pain can originate from natural wear and tear or from traumatic injury. Obese individuals, smokers and those who regularly participate in heavy manual labor are more likely to show signs of degenerative disc disease.

Those suffering from degenerative disc disease often report excruciating pain. In some cases, the pain is strong enough to completely alter the lifestyle of the sufferer.

Degenerative disc disease often produces chronic pain in the lower back which can be felt as far as the buttocks, hips or thighs. It is also common for sufferers to experience chronic neck pain that begins in the upper spine and can be felt all the way to the shoulders, arms and hands. In addition, actions such as sitting, bending, lifting, twisting or walking can put pressure on the disc resulting in pain.

The damage in your spinal discs can also bring about osteoarthritis, herniated discs and spinal stenosis. All of these conditions can put pressure on the nerves and potentially damage the normal functions of a nerve.

Degenerative Disc Disease Treatment

Dr. Malone and his staff at Advanced Pain Care offer various pain management treatments for the painful symptoms of degenerative disc disease. One of our doctors can discuss treatment options following consultation. Make an appointment to begin the healing process. We have locations across Central Texas to serve you: Austin, Round Rock, Georgetown, Waco and Cedar Park.