Degenerative Disc Disease & Sciatica - Symptoms

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What are the symptoms of degenerative disc disease?

Degeneration of the disc tissue makes the disc more susceptible to herniation. Degeneration of the disc can cause local pain in the affected area. Any level of the spine can be affected by disc degeneration. When disc degeneration affects the spine of the neck, it is referred to as cervical disc disease. When the mid-back is affected, the condition is referred to as thoracic disc disease. Disc degeneration that affects the lumbar spine can cause low back pain (referred to as lumbago) or irritation of a spinal nerve to cause pain radiating down the leg (sciatica). Lumbago causes pain localized to the low back and is common in older people. Degenerative arthritis (osteoarthritis) of the facet joints that can be detected with plain X-ray testing is also a cause of localized lumbar pain. The pain from degenerative disc or joint disease of the spine is usually treated conservatively with intermittent heat, rest, rehabilitative exercises, and medications to relieve pain, muscle spasm, and inflammation.

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See what others are saying

Comment from: YellowRose50, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 20

I woke up one morning 6 months ago unable to stand. Doctors have treated me for muscle spasms and nerve damage. I'm still unable to stand and walk for more than 1 hour without having to get off my leg. I have pain in the right leg only, pain and burning in the calf area outer right side, pain goes from calf to ankle and up to hip. It is painful to sit, get up from sitting, can't reach, bend or turn head to left, without pain going straight down my leg. Getting in and out of the car is a chore, personal hygiene and dressing is a chore as well. I still have not found the cause and still taking pain medications.

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Comment from: notinpain, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: February 04

I had a bulging disc inwards; severe pain constantly. I did it all trying to ease the pain; therapy, shots, and of course the pain medications. Little worked. One day I got up from watching a football game and I fell face forward. I had no feeling in my lower extremities from the belly button down. I didn't know what was wrong. I was given 3 choices: 1 live with it, 2 medicate it, or 3 surgery. Well, after some thought of being in a wheelchair the rest of my life and not able to play with my sons, I opted for surgery. After 12 hours I was in a room recovering. Five days later I was walking on my own with no assistance. It was the best choice I ever made.

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