Doctor insights on:
Thoracic Degenerative Disc Disease
I have severe thoracic degenerative disc disease and desiccation. I have started having trouble breathing, chest pain, rib pain, and heart palpitation?
Being a 31 y/o male, what does it mean when my report says mild multilevel degenerative disc disease and slight scoliosis in the thoracic and lumbar?
Disc disease: Being male and 31 years old mild disc disease is a common finding and if not associated with any pain or weakness there are no surgical indications for treatment. ...Read more
Could an untreated compression fracture in the mid-thoracic spine ultimately lead to degenerative disc disease of the lumbar spine?
No: No way to conmect the two.Get a more detailed answer ›
22 year-old woman is 59" and 85 pounds, found to have osteoporosis, and despite not having any eating problems, cannot gain weight to get back.....?
A sequence: Degenerative discs leak fluid which sets up a significant inflammation with pain and sometimes dysfunction of sensory and functional nerves. Treatment includes rest, ice (not heat) and good physical therapy along with nsaids. Steroid injections can sometimes help. If the condition persists more than 3 months, surgery is sometimes needed. ...Read more
Depends on symptoms: Degenerative disc disease, is a misnomer -- and not a disease. Just normal wear & tear that occurs w/ age -- it typically starts in the 2nd decade of life, everyone experiences this--equivalent to skin wrinkles (:degenerative skin disease"), gray hair ("degenerative hair disease"). In of itself needs no treatment. If symptoms present, ask your spine surgeon to guide you through finding the source. ...Read more
Pretty much: The most common type of arthritis is known as degenerative arthritis and describes the gradual wearing down of the cartilage cushion in a particular joint. In the spine, the disc serves as the cartilage cushion between the vertebrae. When it gets worn down this is known as degenerative disc disease, which essentially is a degenerative arthritis of the spine. Thank you for your question. ...Read more
Different: degenerative disc disease can occur in the absence of arthritis, but it can cause a focal arthritic process. Every situation is different. The definition of arthritis is joint inflammation, degenerative disc disease puts more stress on the joints of the spine and increases the likelihood of arthritis in those specific facet joints. ...Read more
Etodolac: Lodine, or etodolac, is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory and generally does well for degenerative disease in the joints and spine. However, don't forget the importance of strengthening and improving the flexibility of the nearby muscles - this can do even more than medicine to help with degenerative pains. ...Read more
Maybe: It is impossible to give you a reliable answer without data. For how long have you been unable to walk, how much the inability is due to weakness vs pain, what your spine imaging shows, are all critical factors. Your phyisicans (who should be neurologists, neurosurgeons, or orthopedists, and perhaps rehab specialists) can best judge. ...Read more
Back Pain Options: This back pain as you suggested is the result of an irritated nerve or facet joints or other injury typically in the lumbar spine (low back) which are caused by herniated disks, spinal stenosis or degenerative disc disease, etc requiring further evaluation by a spine specialist and may be candidate for facet injections/radiofrequency ablation and epidural steroid injection. Surgery can be avoided. ...Read more
None unless they: Aggravate your symptoms. Exercise in terms of flexibility, core strengthening and cardiovascular routines will help to control your symptoms along with lifestyle considerations like: adequate sleep, weight control, not smoking and good dietary intake of calcium and vitamin d. ...Read more
Doc has dx with degenerative disc disease. Will exercise make condition worse or help? If help what exercise is best?
Just be sure-: -that her doctor is an orthopedic surgeon. ...Read more
I have juvenile degenerative disc disease and we are worried about complications arising when I get pregnant. What are common problems?
Don't worry be happy: There is little chance of anything more than some increased lower back pain as long as your weight is under control, you are exercising regularly and you are not smoking. This slight increased risk of back pain can be managed with physical therapy modalities and with a pregnancy support harness if needed ...Read more
Genetics: In a research study started in 1991 and published in 2009 (the spine journal 9 pg. 47-59), identical and nonidentical twins were longitudinally studied. Twins had widely differing levels of risk factors (activity, smoking, occupation) thought to cause ddd. This study showed that there is a strong genetic component to ddd and that external risk factors previously belived to be important, were not. ...Read more
Unfortunately, as we age, everyone is at risk for degenerative disc disease. However, the risk is higher in individuals with the following:
3. High demand jobs involving a lot of vibration, repetitive bending, or lifting (such as truck drivers, construction workers, jobs involving frequent heavy lifting, etc.)
4. Genetic tendency in families
5. Trauma. ...Read more
Initial treatments for ddd and osteoarthritis of the spine include physical therapy, massage, medications. Some try acupuncture or chiropractic manipulation. If symptoms are more severe, consider pain management for stronger medications. Sometimes, despite all these treatments, symptoms are still there.
See your doctor first. Consider an evaluation by a spine surgeon to discuss surgery. ...Read more
Misnomer: For practical purposes, it's a misnomer describing an aging disc. It's like telling someone with wrinkles that she suffers from "degenerative skin disease". Radiologists love to use this term, so do busy spine surgeons. "disease" makes it sound like you urgently need a fusion or artificial disc implant. All our discs "degenerate" over time and most of us never have any trouble from that. ...Read more