Degenerative spine conditions — like osteoarthritis and herniated discs — are very common sources of neck pain, back pain and other symptoms. The discomfort and limited mobility caused by one of these conditions can be disruptive to your life and it can be easy to wonder if it’s possible to find relief. Degenerative spine problems and related symptoms are treatable, but a big part of that treatment being effective relies on your participation as a patient.
If your doctor has recommended degenerative spine treatment after diagnosing you with a condition, there are a few basic facts to keep in mind that can help you find lasting relief.
Most degenerative spine treatments are nonsurgical
Most people with degenerative spine conditions first attempt to manage their symptoms through one or more nonsurgical, conservative measures including:
- Medications to control inflammation and pain
- Physical therapy and exercise to improve strength and flexibility of the spine and surrounding muscles
- Lifestyle changes, like losing excess body weight and quitting smoking, to increase overall health and reduce stress on the spine
- Epidural injections to relieve swelling and pain
It may take some trial and error to find the right techniques to address your specific needs, potentially taking a few weeks before you notice improvement in your symptoms. That’s why patience and perseverance are key as you work with your doctor to develop a plan that is right for you.
There are different types of degenerative spine surgery
In some cases, weeks or months of conservative treatments are not enough to provide sufficient relief from degenerative spine symptoms. In these cases, surgery may be recommended as a way of addressing underlying spinal problems to provide relief of pain and other symptoms. There are a number of surgical approaches to degenerative spine treatment, depending on the type and severity of the condition, as well as the location of the affected portion of the spine.
As an alternative to traditional open spine procedures and the large incision, overnight hospitalization and long recovery time involved, USA Spine Care provides minimally invasive outpatient spine surgery. Our procedures use muscle-sparing techniques and involve a less than 1-inch incision, leading to less risk of complication and a shorter recovery time compared to traditional open spine surgery.
To learn more, contact us today. We offer a no-cost MRI or CT scan review* to determine if you may be a candidate for one of our procedures.