Pain due to a disc or “Discogenic pain” is a common source of extreme pain and disability. There are exciting advances in disc biology including science of stem cells and regeneration which is likely to ease the suffering from disabling back and neck pain due to disc degeneration.
Disc degeneration is a fact of life, but most back pain is treated best with directed exercise and physical therapy. Making the correct and precise diagnosis is of utmost importance and Dr. Vokshoor’s individualized treatment resides on devising unique strategies to treat discogenic pain, starting from the first tier principle (for mild pain): Strengthening the stabilizers, cardio reconditioning, weight management if needed, medication therapy in certain cases, to second tier (moderate to severe pain) of aggressive pain management, traction and decompression techniques, soft tissue manipulation and some alternative therapies (such as acupuncture, guided movement techniques), to the final tier which consists of targeted injections including stem cells, anesthetic discography and microsurgery. Finally, disc arthroplasty and dynamic stabilization are employed as a last resort but very definitive options. In essence there will not be an avenue unexplored in our quest to adequately return the patient to their baseline or desired function.
We should mention that anytime there is evidence of nerve damage, progressive weakness or disabling pain, urgent medical evaluation and treatment is warranted.
Dr. Vokshoor’s latest article on innovative techniques in neurosurgery is accessible below: