Degenerative Disc Disease Treatment
Disc conditions are painful and problems like torn or slipped disc can relate to degenerative disc disease. Aging breaks down or degenerates the spinal discs, which may result in degenerative disc disease. In addition, the loss of fluid...”, the loss of fluid in the discs and small tears or cracks in the outer layers of the disc can coincide with this condition. Advanced imaging studies such as an MRI can help elucidate this condition. A variety of treatment may be considered.
This disease can affect the spine including the lower back (lumbar region) and the neck (cervical region). The disease may irritate nerves and/or the spinal cord, leading to terrible pain and considerable effects on the nerve functioning. Treatment is focused on removing inflammation from around the disc by using steroid and anti-inflammatory medications.”
In addition, exercise and physical therapy stretches the back, eventually providing relief by dynamically relieving crowded and irritated areas in the spine. Once the biomechanics are optimized, and the spine is unloaded, the body’s natural ability to heal is accessed. Along with the physical stretches and exercises, other modalities like ultrasound, TENS units, massage or manual manipulations help control symptoms.
In case of persisting pain, epidural steroid injection can also be considered. An epidural steroid injection resets the inflammatory clock and allows a person to take advantage of the “window of opportunity” during which they can perform more physical therapy. This will tweak the biomechanics so that the chances of pain are minimized.
Once you feel the pain is interfering with the quality of life, surgical alternatives can be considered. Surgery can sometimes help when other treatment options don’t quite work. By addressing the degenerative disc at its core, surgery can be used to fundamentally reconstruct the problem.
Oral Medication and Other Treatments
Heat or ice, when applied to the affected area, acts as an effective pain reliever. Another treatment is to use drugs (acetaminophen, such as Tylenol or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, including aspirin, such as Bayer, ibuprofen, such as Advil or naproxen sodium, such as Aleve) to relieve pain. Oral medications can control the pain and the person can continue with physical activities. Some treatments depend on whether the damaged disc has resulted in other conditions, like a herniated disc, osteoarthritis, or spinal stenosis.