Degenerative Disc Disease

Degenerative disc disease is the result of discs in your spine “wearing down.” When a disc is injured, the tough outer ring loses its stiffness, and the inner material may squeeze out onto the nerves and cause pain. The loss of stiffness of the disc may lead to spinal instability or abnormal motion between two bones in the spine during normal activities like leaning forward, leaning backward, or twisting. Lumbar degenerative disc disease may cause severe lower back pain, with pain shooting across the buttocks or occasionally down the leg.

Most patients who experience degernative disc disease will improve with non-surgical treatment and never need a surgery.  The most common non-surgical treatments include:

  • Patient education
  • Rest
  • Weight loss
  • Medication
  • Brace treatment
  • Physical therapy
  • Acupuncture
  • Chiropractic care
  • Massage
  • Injections

Most patients’ symptoms resolve or improve by the end of three months of non-surgical treatment.


Disclaimer: This content is for educational purposes only and does not replace having a conversation with your doctor.