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Degenerative Disc Disease Isn't a Disease

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Back in Control - Live

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Many patients have been told that they have “arthritis, bulging discs, herniated discs, bone on bone, ruptured discs or degenerated discs”. They are terrified that they will become increasingly disabled and need to be especially protective of their spines. Their lifestyle may become quite limited. We know that if you view any body part as “damaged”, you’ll tend to focus on it and the sensations from that area become magnified. Then the next logical step in thinking your spine is “a disaster” is to be worried about becoming paralyzed. None of this is true. Physicians don’t know the exact source of back pain most of the time. But we actually do know that the discs between the vertebrae are not the source of chronic pain.

In this episode, spine surgeon Dr. David Hanscom reminds us that there are hundreds of thousands of spine fusions being performed annually in the U.S. on degenerated discs for back pain. The results are unpredictable and people are often worse. He warns us to be careful. A spine fusion is a major intervention. You might be making the decision to have surgery performed on a structure that is completely normal for your age. For more information, go to http://www.backincontrol.com/degenerated-discs-are-normal-as-we-age

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