Spinal Glossary: I

  • IDET (intradiscal electrothermal therapy): The insertion of a probe to heat tissues within a degenerating intervertebral disc that is the source of nerve compression causing pain, tingling, numbness or muscle weakness. This causes disc tissue to shrink, thereby alleviating nerve compression. Small nerve fibers on the periphery of the disc are cauterized, which may also account for diminished symptoms.
  • instability: As related to the spine, this refers to an inability of a portion of the spinal anatomy to perform its intended function. This can be caused by a number of degenerative spine conditions or by traumatic injury.
  • interbody fusion: Grafting bone in the space where an intervertebral disc used to be, for the purpose of fusing two or more vertebral segments.
  • intervertebral cage: A type of instrumentation used to promote fusion during surgery.
  • Intervertebral Disc: A cartilaginous disc between two vertebrae that serves to provide cushioning and absorb impact.
  • internal disc disruption (IDD): A controversial condition that is believed to cause discogenic pain when the structures of the intervertebral disc deteriorate without necessarily extruding into the spinal column.
  • ibuprofen: An analgesic in the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug class used to treat mild to moderate pain and inflammation.