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Degenerative Disc Disease

offered in Scottsdale, Mesa and Phoenix, AZ

Degenerative Disc Disease

Degenerative disc disease is a chronic pain condition that can interfere with your mobility, flexibility, and ability to complete daily activities without pain. With locations in Scottsdale, Mesa, and Phoenix, Arizona, Nikesh Seth, MD, and the Integrated Pain Consultants team target the underlying cause of degenerative disc disease to enhance your quality of life. Call the location nearest you today or schedule an appointment online to learn more.

Degenerative Disc Disease Q & A

What is degenerative disc disease?

Degenerative disc disease occurs when the spinal discs begin to break down. These discs sit between the vertebrae — the bones of the spine. Each disc cushions and supports the vertebrae, allowing the spine flexibility and minor movement. 

When the discs deteriorate, friction can develop between the vertebrae, leading to pain and discomfort. They may bulge or herniate, irritating and putting pressure on surrounding nerves. 

Is degenerative disc disease really that serious?

Degenerative disc disease is a progressive condition that can cause significant pain and limit your mobility without proper treatment. Early intervention is essential to slow its progression and prevent symptoms, such as:

  • Pain that worsens when bending or twisting
  • Lower back pain when sitting
  • Numbness or tingling in the arms or legs
  • Weakness in the extremities

People with degenerative disc disease often feel better when walking, exercising, or lying flat on their backs, as these movements relieve disc compression.

What triggers degenerative disc disease?

Age is the most common cause of degenerative disc disease. Most people have some level of disc degeneration by age 60, though not everyone experiences back pain. Repetitive stress from sports and daily activities can also cause the spinal discs to break down, leading to:

  • Chronic pain
  • Disc instability
  • Swelling
  • Soreness

Spinal discs also lose moisture as you age. When you’re young, these discs contain about 80% water. Over time, the discs dry out, leaving them brittle. They can’t absorb shock as well as they once did, leading to deterioration.

Will degenerative disc disease resolve on its own, or do I need treatment?

Degenerative disc disease doesn’t heal on its own and typically gets worse over time. That’s why interventional care is essential to maintain your mobility and independence. 

Treatments for degenerative disc disease may include:

  • Joint injections
  • Epidural steroid injections
  • Chiropractic care
  • Physical therapy
  • IntraDiscal electrothermal therapy
  • Disc denervation
  • Medication management

The experienced pain management specialists at Integrated Pain Consultants work with you to develop an individualized plan that addresses your unique needs and goals.

If you struggle with back pain, call Integrated Pain Consultants today or schedule an appointment online to find relief from degenerative disc disease.