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Degenerative Disc Disease

Diagnosis & Treatment for Back Pain in Dallas

Spinal discs are rubbery discs of cartilage that separate each vertebra and provide shock absorption and padding within the spine. Discs can undergo a great deal of wear and tear over a lifetime. Degradation of the discs is known as degenerative disc disease.

The spine specialists at the Methodist Moody Brain and Spine Institute can perform diagnostic tests to see if degenerative disc disease is causing your back pain. Our team knows many noninvasive and minimally invasive treatments that can help you reduce and manage the pain.

Do I Have Degenerative Disc Disease?

Back pain can have many possible causes, and degenerative disc disease is not always the cause of chronic back problems. A spine specialist experienced in back pain can examine your condition and perform tests to find the cause of your back pain.

Symptoms of degenerative disc disease include:

  • Pain and weakness in the back that radiates to other parts of the back or the legs
  • Pain that is worse when sitting or standing
  • Tingling and numbness in the feet
  • Relief from nagging pain when you rest or lie down
  • Pain when bending over or lifting something

Degenerative Disc Disease Treatment

Exercise, weight loss, and physical therapy can be effective pain management tools for patients with degenerative disc disease. A qualified pain management physician is also typically involved, and can prescribed a course of medications or epidural injections. If these nonsurgical treatments do not work, surgery may be an option. There are several minimally invasive surgical procedures for degenerative disc disease. Lumbar fusion, where two vertebrae are fused together, is a common procedure. A disc replacement procedure, where the natural disc is replaced with an artificial one, is another viable choice. To see if either of these options are right for you, schedule an appointment with one of the neurosurgeons at the Methodist Moody Brain and Spine Institute.

Call (214) 948-2076 for more information about degenerative disc disease and treatment options.