Conditions that can be treated by a back physician in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

The older you age, the more likely you are to develop a degenerative spine condition in the neck and lower back. Over the years, the anatomical components of the spine are particularly susceptible to deterioration because the spine is extremely flexible and also burdened by supporting the majority of the body’s weight. As a result, normal wear and tear tends to take its toll on the neck and back, which can lead to chronic pain and the onset of all sorts of degenerative spine conditions. While this may sound troubling, it is important to understand that this deterioration is also normal and that your local Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, back physician should be able to help you overcome your discomfort.

Degenerative spine conditions

Your local Philadelphia spine physicians may diagnose you with any number of degenerative spine conditions. Here are just a few examples typically associated with the natural aging process:

  • Degenerative disc disease — the bulging or rupturing of one or more of the intervertebral discs that normally cushion the spine.

  • Facet disease — a common form of osteoarthritis that occurs when the cartilage that lines the vertebral joints gradually wears away, causing bone-on-bone contact.

  • Spinal stenosis — the narrowing of the spinal column, usually as a result of the presence of herniated disc material, bone spurs and other anatomical components that can result in the compression of the spinal cord or various nerve roots.

  • Spondylolisthesis — the misalignment of one or more vertebrae in the vertebral column. This condition is usually diagnosed in terms of severity, but even a slight shift in a vertebra can impinge a nearby nerve root and lead to chronic pain.

Treatment options

Once you have been diagnosed with one of these conditions, developing a treatment plan is the first step toward finding relief from its symptoms. There are a number of conservative, nonsurgical methods that a physician may recommend first to help you overcome your pain. The use of low-impact exercise, stretches, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and other similar methods can be quite effective. However, in the event that your back physician recommends spine surgery, contact Laser Spine Institute in Philadelphia and learn about our minimally invasive, outpatient procedures as an alternative to traditional open neck or back surgery.