Acute lower back pain is the second most common reason for doctor visits and the third leading cause of lost days of work in the United States.
Degenerative spine disease is one cause of acute lower back pain and can be extremely debilitating if not treated properly. The most common forms of degenerative spine disease are spinal stenosis and degenerative disc disease.
Spinal stenosis is a narrowing of the open spaces within your spine, which can put pressure on your spinal cord and the nerves that travel through the spine. Degenerative disc disease occurs when the collagen that makes up the discs in between our vertebrae loses its ‘spongy’ quality and begins to collapse.
The first step to preventing, treating and relieving back pain is lifestyle modification— regular exercise, quitting nicotine use and controlling co-existing conditions, such as diabetes.
Physical therapy and other conservative treatment methods, such as cortisone injections, also play a major role in treating degenerative spine disease. If conservative treatment methods fail to relieve the pain and an individual’s quality of life continues to decline, it’s time to discuss surgical options.
Advancements in decompression, fusion and total disc replacement procedures continue to improve outcomes for back surgery and restoring patients’ quality of life.
Fortunately, through Cone Health’s Orthopedic Center of Excellence, individuals in the community suffering from back pain can receive top notch care from their exceptional network of orthopedic specialists.
Dr. Dahari Brooks is an orthopaedic surgeon at Greensboro Orthopaedics and a member of Cone Health’s Orthopedic Center of Excellence. Dr. Brooks received his Bachelors of Science degree in neuroscience from the University of Rochester, and received his Doctor of Medicine from Cornell University Medical College.
He completed his surgical internship and orthopaedic residency at the University of Rochester and his spine fellowship at the State University of New York at Syracuse University. His training focused on degenerative conditions of the spine as well as spinal malignancy, trauma and deformity.