It’s a simple fact of life that our bodies break down as we age and with aggressive activities. There’s no way to stop the spine from degenerating, but we have developed methods for treating the symptoms of degeneration so patients can maintain a great quality of life well into their twilight years. I have helped countless patients bounce back from degenerative spine disease during my time as a spinal neurosurgeon. Give me a ring today to talk about the various treatment options available to patients with degenerative spine disease.
What is Degenerative Spine Disease?
Humans are not built to last forever, our bodies naturally break down. The spinal vertebrae, discs, and other structures are no different. The term “Degenerative Spine Disease” is a tad misleading in that it is not, strictly speaking, a disease. Rather, degenerative spine disease refers to the natural degeneration of a person’s spine. Everyone will deal with some degree of degenerative spine disease if they live long enough.
Signs and symptoms of a degenerative spine might include any of the following:
- Pain in the back or neck
- Decreased mobility (trouble bending or twisting your back)
- Loss of feeling in the arms, legs, hands, or feet
- Pain or weakness in the arms and legs
These symptoms can occur suddenly or develop over time. Regardless of how they appear, these symptoms should always be addressed by a skilled spine physician.
Treating Degenerative Spine Disease
Symptoms of degenerative spine disease are various, and treatment options for these symptoms are similarly varied. Patients with mild symptoms may do well with conservative treatments like NSAIDs, prescription pain killers, and physical therapy. Other patients may require surgical intervention or injections, especially if the spinal nerves are in jeopardy. If your discs have broken down, an artificial disc replacement can return your mobility instead of a fusion. Minimally invasive spine surgery can significantly reduce your back pain and allow you to live your life to the fullest. If you are struggling with back pain, give me a call today to chat about your treatment options.