DEGENERATIVE DISC DISEASE
Degenerative disc disease is one of the most common causes of low back and neck pain, and also one of the most misunderstood.
Simply put, degenerative disc disease refers to symptoms of back or neck pain caused by wear-and-tear on a spinal disc. In some cases, degenerative disc disease also causes weakness, hot, numbness, shooting pains in the arms or legs (radicular pain). Degenerative disc disease typically consists of a low-level chronic pain with intermittent episodes of more severe pain.
WHAT CAUSES DEGENERATIVE DISC DISEASE?
Your spinal disks are made up of a soft inner core and a tough outer wall. The disks change in ways that may cause degenerative disk disease, such as:
Dry out. When we're born, the disks in our spine are mostly made up of water. As we age, they lose water and get thinner. Flatter disks can't absorb shocks as well. The water loss also means less cushion or padding between the vertebrae. This can lead to other problems in our spine that may cause pain.
Crack. The stress of daily movements and minor injuries over the years can cause tiny tears in the outer wall, which contains nerves. Any tears near the nerves can become painful. And if the wall breaks down, the disk's soft core may push through the cracks. The disk may bulge, or slip out of place, which is called a slipped or herniated disk. It can affect nearby nerves.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS?
Common symptoms of this condition include:
Numbness and tingling in the extremities.
Weakness in the leg muscles or foot drop, a possible sign of damage to the nerve root.
Pain that gets worse when bending, lifting or twisting.
Pain that is worse when sitting. While seated, the discs of the lower back have three times more load on them than when standing usually patients confess to feel better while walking or even running.
Feeling better changing positions often or lying down.
Periods of severe pain that come and go. These last from a few days to a few months before getting better. They can range from nagging pain to disabling pain. Pain can affect the low back, buttocks and thighs or the neck, depending on where the affected disc is, radiating to the arms and hands.
CAN SPINAL DECOMPRESSION THERAPY HELP DEGENERATING DISCS?
Short answer: Yes!
While lying comfortably on the spinal decompression therapy table, gentle specialized traction forces are applied until decompression is achieved. Decompression produces a negative pressure inside the discs that acts like a vacuum. This negative pressure produces an influx of fluid and minerals which helps the discs to heal. Then with the addition of specific nutrients and minerals through supplements, the influx helps the discs to heal, become more flexible, more hydrated and even taller.
As disc bulges or herniations are drawn in, or as the discs begin to regenerate, pressure is taken off of the nerves and surrounding structures relieving the patient of pain and decreasing inflammation.
WHAT ARE THE TREATMENTS LIKE?
At the beginning of your treatment, Dr. Ferris will dig deep to bring to light the real root of your pain, treating it at the source instead of the symptom. The treatment is safe and even relaxing. Each treatment session of spinal decompression lasts approximately 30 minutes. During a session therapy you will notice a slow lengthening of your spine as your discs are gradually decompressed and relieved of pressure.
The treatment process is safe and relaxing. While some patients with extensively injured discs have reported mild discomfort during the first few treatment sessions, their discomfort generally subsides upon subsequent visits. A patient safety switch provides an extra safety feature, allowing you to stop at any point should you feel discomfort.
WHAT IS THE TYPICAL TREATMENT PROTOCOL?
The normal spinal decompression therapy treatment protocol is about 12-20 sessions over four to six weeks as the treatment will be designed especially to you. Some conditions require fewer visits; some require more.
Many patients report relief from their pain and other symptoms during the first few treatment sessions, and most experience dramatic pain relief after completion of their prescribed treatment program.
WHY IS SPINAL DECOMPRESSION THERAPY DIFFERENT FROM TRACTION, PHYSICAL THERAPY AND CHIROPRACTIC MANIPULATION?
While traction, physical therapy, and manipulation may reduce disc pressures to as low as 40 mmHg, only spinal decompression therapy has been shown to achieve negative pressures within the spine. It has been clinically proven that spinal decompression therapy creates negative pressures as low as -110 mmHg within the injured disc during the treatment session. Normally, pulls exerted on the spine trigger sensory receptors in the back to tighten the muscles surrounding the vertebrae and discs in an effort to protect them from injury.
Spinal Decompression Therapy bypasses this response by slowly pulling on the spine and relaxing the back over an extended period of time, allowing the spine to be repositioned without tension and without causing spasm and muscle guarding. It is important for patients to make sure that they are treated on a high quality true spinal decompression therapy table by a physician with years of experience and not an imitation spinal decompression therapy table.
IS IT TRUE THAT RESEARCH HAS SHOWN UP TO 88.9% SUCCESS RATE FOR SPINAL DECOMPRESSION THERAPY?
Yes it is! More than 10 research articles have shown success rates for spinal decompression therapy to be up to 88.9%. In fact this statistics have been stated even for more than a decade. John Leslie M.D. and the Mayo Clinic reported at the 18th Annual Meeting American Academy of Pain Management in Tampa Florida on September 5, 2007 the following amazing statistics:
Multi-center, phase II, non-randomized pilot study utilizing spinal decompression therapy.
Designed to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of spinal decompression therapy in the treatment of chronic lower back pain.
Patients enrolled have an average of ten years of chronic back pain.
After two weeks of treatments of spinal decompression – 50% reduction in pain scores.
Upon completion of the entire six week protocol success rate of 88.9% was documented.
IS IT TRUE THAT PROFESSIONAL ATHLETES, CELEBRITIES AND PATIENTS IN THEIR 90’S HAVE TURNED TO SPINAL DECOMPRESSION THERAPY AND COLD LASER THERAPY AS A SUCCESSFUL, NON-SURGICAL OPTION TO NECK AND BACK PAIN WITHOUT THE USE OF DRUGS, PILLS AND SURGERY?
Yes! Celebrities, professional athletes and even patients in their 90’s are turning to spinal decompression therapy and cold laser therapy as an affordable, non-surgical alternative to neck and back pain without the use of drugs, pills and surgery.
There has been a trend in recent years for people getting tired of taking pills that simply mask the pain and can cause all kinds of serious side effects. People are frustrated with getting shots that work the first time or two and then eventually have minimal or no effect. And one thing that never changes, is that people are scared of surgery. They have seen firsthand their friends and relatives who spent 1,000’s of dollars, having weeks of “down time”, have scars, and risked serious side effects and still ended up with a “failed back surgery syndrome”. New non-surgical spinal decompression therapy is not only effective and affordable but is also non-invasive and safe!
*Individual patient results may vary.