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What You Need to Know About Spine Disease

When you think of the word disease, you often think of a life hindering aliment. While spine disease can often lead to pain and mobility issues which make everyday tasks more difficult, the good news is that with the help of an expert, even with a spine disease you may be able to live your life with less pain or possibly pain-free. Therefore, if you are experiencing spine pain, do not hesitate to visit a spine expert who can conduct a physical exam and use imaging tests such as x-rays, MRIs, and CT-scans to determine whether you have a spine disease.

Most Common Types of Spine Disease

In order to better understand spine disease, it is important to first look at the different types. The type of spine disease your provider  diagnoses you with will dictate the type of treatment necessary to relieve your symptoms. The most common spine diseases that we treat at Pacific Spine Specialists include the following:

Herniated Disc

Also referred to as a ruptured disc, this type of injury occurs when the inner core of your spinal disc pushes through the outer layer of your disc. A herniated disc often causes a sharp pain in the spine which radiates down through the leg. In many cases, repetitive motion injuries, also known as wear and tear can result in herniated discs.

Spinal Stenosis

Spinal stenosis is a term used to describe the narrowing of the spinal canal, which may put pressure on the nerves that travel through your spine. Spinal stenosis is usually found in the neck and lower back. Symptoms of spinal stenosis include pain, weakness, and numbness that worsen over time.


Spondylolisthesis occurs when one of the lower bones that makes up the spinal column slips forward to rest on the bone that is directly underneath. Spondylolisthesis spine disease to when mild can often cause little to  no symptoms, but if your case of this spine disease  is more severe, you may experience lower spine pain, back and leg stiffness, and thigh pain.

Degenerative Disc Disease

Degenerative disc disease is caused by the deterioration of spinal discs due to age or injury.

As you age, your discs may lose their elasticity and flexibility, leading to degenerative disc disease. There are many symptoms of degenerative disc disease, such as pain that worsens when sitting, bending, lifting or twisting, pain that hurts the low back, buttocks, and thighs, periods of severe pain that come and go and numbness and tingling in the extremities.

Spinal Fracture

In a majority of cases, a spinal fracture occurs as a result of trauma to the spine. Examples of traumatic injuries that may cause spinal fractures include sports injuries, falls, or car accidents. The location of the fracture will determine where you may experience symptoms such as severe pain, weakness, numbness, or tingling, and paralysis.

Treatment of Spine Disease

When determining  the most effective course of treatment for your spine disease, you first must be diagnosed by a spine expert. Your spine expert will use your diagnosis to develop a treatment plan that offers the highest chance of pain relief and recovery. In many instances, conservative measures such as rest, cold and hot therapy, medications, and physical therapy may be recommended first and foremost to relieve symptoms. In cases where conservative measures fail to produce results, surgery may be recommended.

Learn More

If you believe you may be suffering from one of the spine diseases above, we invite you to explore Pacific Spine Specialists. Dr. Keenen and our team of experts would welcome the opportunity to learn more about your condition, provide education, and ultimately provide relief. Contact us today to get started.