Degenerative Disc Disease

In this week’s Newsletter from Orthomedical, we focus on a Degenerative Disc Disease which we came across in WebMD (http://www.webmd.com). Contrary to the term disease, Degenerative Disc disease is a term used to describe the normal changes in spinal discs as people age. The discs act as shock absorbers for the spine, allowing it to flex, bend, and twist. Degenerative disc disease can take place throughout the spine, but it most often occurs in the discs in the lower back (lumbar region) and the neck (cervical region). The below picture shows the spine and discs in the spine

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As we age, our spinal discs break down, or degenerate, which may result in degenerative disc disease in some people. These age-related changes include:

  • The loss of fluid in your discs. This reduces the ability of the discs to act as shock absorbers and makes them less flexible. Loss of fluid also makes the disc thinner and narrows the distance between the vertebrae.
  • Tiny tears or cracks in the outer layer (annulus or capsule) of the disc. The jellylike material inside the disc (nucleus) may be forced out through the tears or cracks in the capsule, which causes the disc to bulge, break open (rupture), or break into fragments.

The symptoms of Degenerative disc disease is that it may result in back or neck pain, but this varies from person to person. Many people have no pain, while others with the same amount of disc damage have severe pain that limits their activities. Where the pain occurs depends on the location of the affected disc. An affected disc in the neck area may result in neck or arm pain, while an affected disc in the lower back may result in pain in the back, buttock, or leg. The pain often gets worse with movements such as bending over, reaching up, or twisting.

During Clinical trials of  Back Treatment and Support Belt Disk Dr. WG30 which was carried out at the Department of Orthopaedic surgery, College of Medicine, Inje University Seoul Paik hospital, South Korea, in a similar situation experienced by patients during the trails, the interval of the intervertebral discs at the 4th and 5th segments of the lumbar spine were increased by an average of 3 mm and this was due to resultant lowering of intra-discal pressure by the Disk Dr. WG30 which has been shown to reduce pain and provide ongoing treatment through long-term wearing of the Traction Belt. In lumbar disc herniation patients before their treatment , the intervertebral disc or the the nucleus pulposus is extricated from it’s normal anatomic position in the intervertebral space. This herniated disc compresses on nerve roots and causes back pain, sciatics and muscle spasm. After treatment using Disk Dr.WG 30, it was observed that Disk Dr. helps return nucleus pulposus or the intervertebral disc to it’s original position by reducing the pressure in the intervertebral space creating traction through the air cells within the device.

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