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Disc disease - Definition


The term disc disease refers to diseases affecting the intervertebral discs between each vertebra of the spine. Disc disease is most often degenerative: this is spinal osteoarthritis. Degenerative disc disease is responsible for pain in the neck or back, depending on the affected disc. A radiographic examination of the spine, and sometimes a CT scan, will allow the identification of the disc or discs involved. The goal of the treatment is to relieve pain through painkillers or anti-inflammatories. Rehabilitation sessions through physical therapy also improve pain. It can progress to a herniated disc, meaning the disc protrudes out of the space between the vertebrae which can compress the nerve roots causing pain in the areas they innervate.