Disk degerneration - how much is too much to fix?

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Disk degerneration - how much is too much to fix?

Postby john_r » Mon Oct 01, 2007 10:56 am

Hi

I have degenerative disc disease at the L5-L6 level. Yes I also have a transitional vertebra. I noticed that Dean believes that a degenerated disk condition can be reversed if caught soon enough. The level of degeneration for me is moderately severe. The disk is less than half the hight of the other disks in the lumbar region.The are also desiccation and discogenic marrow changes in this disk. Is there any hope for reversing this damaged disk? I am taking 1500 mg of vitamin c and have increase my calcium and magnesium intake as well. I have never been over weight but the last few years my weight did approach the recommended maximum weight for my height. I have lost 10 lbs in the last year, and hope to lose another 10 by next year.

John
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Postby Dean » Wed Oct 03, 2007 9:41 pm

Hi John,

It depends on how dessicated the disk is. If it's totally dried out and none of the nucleus is left there isn't anything you can do to restore it. That doesn't mean the disk will cause you pain. Only that it is beyond restoring.

Dean
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Postby john_r » Thu Oct 04, 2007 12:41 am

Dean wrote:Hi John,

It depends on how dessicated the disk is. If it's totally dried out and none of the nucleus is left there isn't anything you can do to restore it. That doesn't mean the disk will cause you pain. Only that it is beyond restoring.

Dean


Dean

Thanks for the reply. I am not sure if the disk is completely dried out. It looks pretty dark on the T2 Weighted scan, though there might be a little moisture left. The other disks are 13 mm in height and this disk is 6 mm at the thickest point and looks almost like it is bone on bone at the thinest point. It is my understanding that disks do have nerve endings that can cause pain, in some cases this pain is referred to another point in the body. I do know that I have pain on flextion and extension. And I believe that the extension motions aggravate the pain and numbness that I have in my leg and foot. I seem to do better with the flexion exercises - pelvic tilt. I do have very tight hip flexors, which appears to cause my pelvis to tip forward (which may be part of the reason that extension hurts) I am doing stretches to loosen the flexors.

Thanks again

John
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Postby john_r » Fri Oct 05, 2007 9:29 am

Dean

I was re-examining the MIR and the disk is not completely dried out. What exactly happens when a disk is restored? Will it regain lost thickness? Will the anulus fibrosus and nucleus be structurally sound again? Can Glucosamine and Chondroitin Sulfate help restore the disk? I guess my question is what does it mean when you say a disk can be restored?

Thanks for the reply

John
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Postby Dean » Fri Oct 05, 2007 9:12 pm

Understanding the restoration process starts with understanding the anatomy of the disc and why it started to deteriorate. I cover that in my book and in several articles such as:

Reversing Degenerative Disk Disease

A healthy disc can be restored. A totally dead disc cannot. Discs in between will have mixed results. Like I said in my post above, how much depends on the condition of the disc. There are no guarantees. No one can say what your results will be.

Will it regain height? Maybe. Maybe not. It's all about moisture content. You have to get water into the disc.

And no, drinking more water will not help. Taking supplements will not help. The disc obtains its moisture from movement. You need to start doing what I call "hydrating exercises" to get moisture into the disc. I think my book is the only one in existence that contains hydrating exercises, but they aren't rocket science... you can probably come up with some of your own.

Whatever you do, don't obsess over this disc. Do what you can for it (and your back as a whole) but don't waste your time worrying about it. See my article here:

Abnormalities are Normal

Dean
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