Finding relief from degenerative disc disease is one of the main topics brought to light by patients who write to us looking for advice on ending back or neck pain. Virtually all of these frustrated patients claim to have read our comprehensive section on degenerative disc disease, but continue to state the following: "Oh, I read what you have to say about DDD, but I really have it. I saw the x-rays and my vertebrae are closer together than normal. My doctor told me that it is definitely disc degeneration in my spine and this is why I have pain. How do I cure the pain?"
These patients might have read our writing, but they obviously did not understand or absorb it. So, let’s try again, with a new approach. This editorial provides guidance on finding lasting relief from the supposed ravages of disc degeneration. We will explain why degenerative disc disease is perhaps the most difficult of all spinal diagnoses to recover from and also provide a few surprises for readers who are desperate to find relief.
In 99% of patients who have been diagnosed with DDD, and are inquiring about the best way to find relief, we pose a counter question: "Find relief from what?" There might be pain, but who says it is due to disc degeneration?
DDD is completely normal. DDD is expected. DDD is universal. Yes, of course you saw the obvious degeneration on that x-ray or spinal MRI, because it is truly there. We could have saved you the trouble of getting the imaging test done, since every adult will demonstrate DDD to some degree. Disc deterioration is not anything out of the ordinary for any human to experience. Disc desiccation is a ubiquitous part of life. So, we repeat:
"Find relief from what?" Your back pain? Your neck pain? Ok, that is a different story. Let’s address the relationship between disc disease and the occurrence of back or neck symptoms.
There is no cure for disc degeneration. There is absolutely no way to reverse the spinal aging processes. Therefore, for patients who are frantically looking for a cure; we can save you the trouble: Give up. You will fail.
Disc degeneration will continue, no matter what you do or what treatment you attempt. DDD is inherently linked to getting older and living a typical life. However, there is good news. Degenerative disc disease is rarely the source of any pain or neurological symptoms. There is no evidence that disc degeneration is a pathological process and even the most traditional medical researchers now understand that the past theories of disc degeneration causing pain are incorrect.
Back pain is an epidemic condition. This is for sure. Lower back pain is particularly prevalent in today’s healthcare system, while just seventy years ago; it was virtually unheard of and not taken seriously at all.
History does not contain much literary data supporting structural reasons for back pain. You can check the medical literature for yourself. In fact, disc degeneration has become the scapegoat of the modern medical age; used to explain chronic back and neck pain illogically.
DDD is the figurative poster child for misdiagnosis and antiquated medical theory. DDD is the single greatest failure of the Cartesian medical philosophy. Back pain being blamed on normal disc degeneration is nothing short of idiotic, illogical and criminal in some cases, especially when it is done to purposefully enslave a patient into highly profitable treatment.
Disc degeneration does bring vertebral bones closer to one another. DDD also facilitates normal osteoarthritic changes that are also usually quite innocent and asymptomatic.
Disc desiccation contributes to the incidence of intervertebral herniation, but now, even herniated discs have been cleared of causing pain in the majority of affected people. If your pain is due to a condition that has developed because of DDD, then you should be seeking care for that condition, not for the DDD itself.
Therefore, the objective verdict tells that degenerative disc disease is not completely innocent, since it does factor into other potentially pathological spinal issues, but it is not problematic unto itself. This is medical fact. You do not need to find relief from degenerative disc disease. It is a fruitless quest.
Degenerative disc disease; I know all about it. It was my first diagnosis at the naive age of 16. I believed the diagnosis and spent 18 years of my life slowly falling into an ever-worsening trap of intractable back pain. The nocebo effect is very powerful with DDD, as I am sure you all know. The words themselves, degenerative disc disease, sound like a death sentence. You must learn the facts about DDD and get past the diagnosis. While an occasional case of pathological degeneration comes to our attention, these scenarios are truly extremely rare. The rest of you are simply suffering from being human and that means to endure degenerated intervertebral discs as you get older.
Sure, you still have back or neck pain. There is no doubting the truth of that fact. Now, the burden of achieving an accurate diagnosis as to why this pain really exists is placed firmly back on your shoulders.
Do not allow some doctor to provide a cop-out theory that normal spinal aging is responsible for your pain. Instead, demand a thorough evaluation and a comprehensive explanation of the pathological component that is actually driving the symptoms. If they can not answer this query honestly and logically, then it might be time to move on to get a new diagnostic opinion.