As you get older, chances are, you will have some level of degenerative disc disease. It’s only natural for the spongy, shock-absorbent discs between our vertebrae to age right along with the rest of our body. They can dry out, crack, and suffer general wear and tear that many of us will feel sooner or later. If you’re fortunate, the degeneration of these discs will be minimal, and you may never have any associated symptoms. However, for many, pain, limited range of motion, numbness, and weakness can occur, leaving them wondering how and where to find effective treatment.
Epidural Steroid Injections for Degenerative Disc Disease
Epidural steroid injections (ESIs) are a proven treatment for many forms of back pain, including pain associated with degenerative disc disease. These injections can make a significant, positive impact on the day-to-day lives of chronic pain sufferers by delivering a mix of pain-relieving anesthetic and inflammation-reducing steroid directly into the epidural space of the spine. When administered correctly by a skilled and knowledgeable physician, most patients can experience relief from their pain for months at a time. Most patients get an average of three to six months of relief. Sometimes subsequent injections may be needed to maintain results.
Physical Therapy for Degenerative Disc Disease
A strong and flexible back is key to preventing the pain often associated with degenerative disc disease, as well as to slowing the progression of the condition. A physical therapist, particularly one who specializes in orthopedic conditions, can offer many beneficial tools to patients. Stretches to improve flexibility and range of motion, strength building exercises, and education regarding proper posture are just a few. When started early enough, a targeted physical therapy plan can help minimize the development of degenerative disc disease and its impact on a patient’s life. Still, even if the condition has progressed and is accompanied by painful symptoms, PT can still provide great benefit and relief.
Spinal Fusion for Degenerative Disc Disease
Spinal fusion is a surgical technique used to fuse together two or more vertebrae in the spine. The purpose of the procedure is to eliminate motion between these vertebrae and any associated problems such as stretching of surrounding nerves, muscles, and ligaments. It is a viable option for pain relief in many patients who have spine instability due to degenerative disc disease and can protect the affected area from future problems as well.
Best Degenerative Disc Disease Doctors
The orthopedic specialists at the Bone and Joint Clinic of Baton Rouge can help you with all of these treatment options and many others, including stem cell injections. Together, you will be able to find the plan that works best for you and allows you to finally feel relief from your painful symptoms. To get started with any one of our doctors, click the button below.