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Questions your doctor may ask when diagnosing degenerative disc disease

When you talk to a physician about a potential degenerative disc disease diagnosis, he or she will ask you a series of questions about your symptoms. From there, your physician will have you complete several simple tasks to check your spinal alignment and range of motion, then — if needed — order one or more imaging scans to make a conclusive diagnosis.

Diagnosing degenerative disc disease

During the first part of your diagnostic appointment, you can expect to be asked the following questions:

  1. Where, specifically, do you feel pain? Is it in one place or multiple locations?
  2. How long have you been dealing with your symptoms?
  3. Did anything specific, such as a sports injury or a car accident, happen right before you started experiencing your symptoms?
  4. Are there any activities or movements that make your pain better? Worse?
  5. Have you tried any at-home treatments?

Your physician will also look at factors such as your body weight, lifestyle and medical history to determine if degenerative disc disease is likely to be the cause of your symptoms.

What to do if you’ve been diagnosed with degenerative disc disease

If your physician gives you a degenerative disc disease diagnosis, he or she will likely provide you with several treatment options, such as exercise and medications. Usually, degenerative disc disease treatment focuses on conservative therapies first, progressing to surgery only if conservative options don’t produce the desired results.

If you eventually decide that surgery is right for you, you may be able to consider minimally invasive procedures in addition to traditional ones. At USA Spine Care, we perform degenerative disc disease surgery on an outpatient basis using muscle-sparing techniques. For people with a degenerative disc disease diagnosis, our procedures are often clinically appropriate versus open neck or back surgery.^

To find out if you’re a candidate, you can ask the team at USA Spine Care for a free MRI review.* For more information, contact us today.

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