Degenerative disk disease (DDD) is a condition that affects the discs in the spine. These disks act as cushions between the vertebrae, and when they deteriorate, they can cause pain and other issues. While DDD is not always symptomatic, it can be very debilitating when it does occur. There are several treatments available for DDD, including surgery and physical therapy. If you are experiencing any symptoms related to DDD, it is crucial to speak with a specialist in treating a degenerative disc in Shrewsbury. This article looks at some of the standard treatments for a degenerative disk.
1. Epidural Steroid Injections
Epidural steroid injections are a common treatment for DDD. The injection is given directly into the epidural space around the spinal cord. This space is where the nerves travel to and from the brain. The steroids help to reduce inflammation and pain. Epidural steroid injections are usually given as a series of three or four injections, spaced a few weeks apart.
Several risks are associated with epidural steroid injections, including infection and bleeding. It is crucial to speak with your doctor about the risks and benefits of this treatment before deciding if it is right for you.
2. Physical Therapy
Physical therapy is another standard treatment for DDD. PT can help to strengthen the muscles around the spine, improve flexibility and range of motion, and reduce pain. Physical therapy may also include exercises that you can do at home to help improve your condition.
If you are experiencing pain from DDD, physical therapy may be a good option. Speak with your doctor to see if PT is right for you.
3. Spinal Cord Stimulation
Spinal cord stimulation (SCS) is a treatment that uses electrical current to block pain signals from the spinal cord. It is an option for people who have not found relief from other therapies, such as medication or surgery.
SCS involves implanting a device under the skin of the lower back. This device sends an electrical current to the spinal cord, blocking the pain signals. The device can be turned on and off as needed.
SCS is a safe and effective treatment for many people with chronic pain. Speak with your doctor to see if SCS is right for you.
4. Artificial Disk Replacement
In some cases, surgery may be recommended to treat DDD. One of the most common surgeries for DDD is artificial disk replacement. This surgery involves replacing the degenerated disk with an artificial one.
Artificial disk replacement is a safe and effective procedure. It can relieve pain and improve function in many people. Speak with your doctor to see if this surgery is right for you.
5. Spinal Fusion
In some cases, surgery may also be recommended to fuse the vertebrae. This is called spinal fusion. It is a more invasive surgery and is only used in severe cases of DDD.
Spinal fusion is a safe and effective procedure. It can relieve pain and improve function in many people.
In summary, there are several treatments available for degenerative disk disease. If you are experiencing any symptoms related to DDD, it is essential to speak with a specialist. Treatment options include epidural steroid injections, physical therapy, spinal cord stimulation, and artificial disk replacement. Surgery may also be recommended in some cases.