Below is a list of common spine conditions. For more information, please schedule a consultation with Dr. Kris Parchuri, D.O. and his team in Tulsa today to discuss treatment options. Our goal is to help you get back your life.
Compression Fracture / Osteoporosis
Osteoporosis is a disease that occurs as we get older. More common in women, bones thin and their strength decreases. As the bones become very weak and brittle the likelihood of them sustaining a fracture increases. Fractures caused by osteoporosis most often occur in the spine. These spinal fractures are called vertebral compression fractures and occur in nearly 700,000 patients each year. They are almost twice as common as other fractures typically linked to osteoporosis, such as broken hips and wrists. Not all vertebral compression fractures are due to osteoporosis. But when the disease is involved, a vertebral compression fracture is often a patient’s first sign of a weakened skeleton from osteoporosis. Individuals mainly describe back pain near the fractures. The pain often gets worse with standing or sitting for a period of time, and is often relieved by rest or lying down.
Degenerative Disc Disease (DDD)
Degenerative disc disease (DDD) occurs when the discs between our vertebraes begin to wear down. When this occurs, the discs can bulge resulting in compressed spinal nerves or spinal cord. Although this is a natural process in aging, certain situations, such as a car accident, can accelerate the process. People usually feel back pain in the area of degeneration as the first symptom.
Herniated discs can occur throughout the spine. Most of the time, they occur in the neck or low back. A herniated disc occurs when the disc bulges out of its normal casing and into the spinal column. In the neck, this can cause neck pain and numbness or tingling radiating down the arms if the disc is pressing on the spinal nerves. A herniated disc in the low back region typically causes back pain and sciatica. Sciatica is shooting pain along with numbness or tingling radiating down the legs.
Although this type of arthritis is commonly referred to when talking about hips and knees, it is also seen in the spine. Osteoarthritis is a “wear and tear” process that becomes more prevalent as we age. There are many ways that osteoathritis can affec our spine. For some, it causes minimal discomfort, while for others the pain is unbearable. Fortunately, most patients respond favorably to non-surgical treatment options.
Scoliosis is an abnormal curvature of the spine. Typically, it is not associated with back pain. There are different types of scoliosis and the treatment depends on the type as well as the severity of the curve. Idiopathic scoliosis is the most common form. Others include neuromuscular, degnerative, and congenital.
Degenerative spondylolisthesis occurs when there is a forward slip of the vertebrae of one vertebral body over the one below. It occurs due to weakness in the facet joints. As the slip progresses, the patient’s back pain and leg pain usually increase.
This process usually occurs in adolescent athletes and can be identified on X-ray. A stress fracture occurs in the fifth or fourth lumbar vertebrae leading to back pain. If not properly identified and treated, the vertebrae can slip forward and lead to chronic back and leg pain.
Spinal Stenosis occurs when the space around the spinal cord narrows. As this area is narrowed, there is increased pressure on the spinal cord and nerves leading to back and leg pain. The canal narrowing typically occurs as we age and is due to disk bulges/herniations, bone spurs, and ligament thickening. It typically is a slow developing process.
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