Experiencing arthritis in the spine is a usual part of getting older for most people. This condition goes by many names, including osteoarthritis, spondylosis, spinal arthritis and degenerative joint disease.
Arthritis is thought to be a contributing factor in many different back and neck pain syndromes. The arthritic process are also the primary cause of facet joint syndrome. However, most mild to moderate osteoarthritic processes are normal, virtually universal and not likely to be solely responsible for severe or chronic back pain expressions.
The osteoarthritic processes are facilitated by degenerative disc disease, since this brings the vertebral bones closer together and increases the chance for bone to bone contact. Affected vertebrae often show endplate wearing and the various spinal joints will also demonstrate marked degeneration from arthritic interaction.
Arthritis is the spine is one of the major sources of central spinal stenosis, which is a potentially very serious condition. Although most cases of arthritic debris in the central canal do not become symptomatic, advanced cases or cases where the canal diameter has already been compromised by injury or a congenital condition may elicit truly catastrophic symptoms for the patient. In these circumstances, drastic surgery is usual the only hope for symptomatic resolution.
Arthritis care is a huge sector of medical science and patients must understand the type and severity of arthritic conditions which affect them. This resource section explains the spinal arthritic processes with objective clarity.
Arthritis in the spine is caused by a breakdown of the protective measures in the spinal joints. A normal, healthy vertebral joint moves smoothly and effortlessly. As we age, the cartilage surrounding the joint starts to erode.
This wear and tear is commonly blamed for elderly back pain and might cause some discomfort in certain patients. The lubricating synovial fluid in the joint leaks and becomes less effective. The joint starts to feel rough, as bone surfaces contact each other repetitively.
This bone to bone contact causes the growth of bone spurs, also known as osteophytes, in the spinal joints. These spurs can cause pain from bone to bone friction, as well as potentially causing a pinched nerve if they occur in or around the foraminal openings. Please read more about the psychology of osteoarthritis.
Spinal versions of arthritis feature many names and prognoses. Learn all about the diversity of arthritic conditions with the guidance of these detailed treatises:
Osteoarthritis is a normal part of the aging process and is virtually universal to experience as people get older. However, the diagnosis of osteoarthritis can be a confusing verdict for patients who do not know the objective facts of the condition.
Osteoarthritis pain is typically minor or even nonexistent. Serious OA pain is the exception to the rule, but can certainly occur when the condition reaches extreme levels.
Osteoarthritis therapy is virtually always conservative in nature and often consists of exercises combined with diet and drug interventions.
Arthritis joint pain can strike any of the body's many joints.
Arthritis neck pain is slightly more common than lumbar symptoms, since the neck usually bears the brunt of OA activity in the spinal column.
Arthritis pain can typically be effectively managed with minor treatment protocols.
Do you have OA anywhere in the body? If so, you must read more about the true objective osteoarthritis facts in order to better your chances of finding relief.
Arthritis in the spine affects almost every middle aged and older adult to one degree or another. It is normal and expected! Most people do not suffer many or any symptoms at all from arthritis. If you maintain a proper diet, a healthy weight and good general health, you should not fall victim to any serious arthritic condition. If you do end up having some painful arthritis symptoms in the back, don’t worry. Most of the symptoms can be controlled easily.
It must be noted that arthritis is a widely utilized spinal scapegoat on which pain is mistakenly blamed. Doctors know it will be present in adults and can always rely on it to shoulder the blame for any back or neck pain issue which would otherwise be deemed idiopathic. Just because it is diagnosed as a villain does not make it so.
Learn the facts and understand the complete picture if your severe and widespread symptoms have been linked to what amounts to normal arthritis in the spine.
Spinal arthritis rarely exerts any control over a person without that person giving their permission. Do not be intimidated by normal arthritis. Accept aging and just think of it as a normal part of life… for that is what it is. Some doctors view arthritic change as no more problematic than wrinkles in the skin or gray hair. Getting older does not have to mean experiencing pain.
It must be noted that this article does not describe rheumatoid arthritis, nor does it comment on the rare, but extreme cases of arthritic change where symptoms are obviously sourced through purely structural circumstances in the spine. Luckily, these types of arthritic conditions are rare and do not describe the typical cases of back pain which is blamed on minor or moderate degeneration in the spinal structures.