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Bethesda Physical Therapist Discusses
The 3 Stages Of Spinal Degeneration

People view the spine as a mechanical device that often needs great care and continuous maintenance. The better care you give your spine, the longer it can work without giving you grief. If neglected, on the other hand, it wears out quicker.

As people get older, they develop some level of spinal degeneration. That’s just a fact of life. Some people suffer with more or less symptoms for a number of reasons:

  • General state of health
  • Individual themselves
  • Genetics
  • Multiple health problems

The problems with spinal degeneration along with its complications are only going to get bigger, resulting in a greater disability. Thus, spinal care experts will be a necessary part of getting older.

A Look At The 3 Stages Of Spinal Degeneration

Every single spinal degeneration stage has its own characteristics that the majority of patients can see and comprehend. Each stage is noted below:

Stage I

This level of degeneration starts with changes that take place within the intervertebral disc such as disc volume loss, which results from fluid loss. If a person is suffering with a disease (or diseases) along with the age degeneration, it could progress through this stage quicker. Stage I degeneration typically does not have symptoms but can result in joint problems, spinal stenosis and pain. Physical changes can also be experienced along with loss in height, spinal segment dysfunction, and mild approximation of spinal joints.

Stage II

This stage tends to cause the loss of normal spine curvature, usually seen in bone scans. In this stage, the disc space narrows tremendously, causing the discs to bulge between the bones. Bone spurs show up at spinal joints and people have rougher joint surfaces. With a prominent dysfunction in spinal segments, the body can become unstable.

Stage III

With this stage, there is tremendous loss in normal spinal curvature. There is a highly pronounced degeneration in the discs and the space between them narrow even further. People with stage of spinal degeneration tend to suffer with herniated discs and bone spurs.

With this stage, you may experience spinal stenosis, which is a narrowing in the spinal column. This will place pressure on the spinal cord. As this condition continues, it could result in degenerative fusion called ankyloses where the spinal vertebrae come together.

Who Can Effectively Treat The Spine

Physical therapists can evaluate your spine and come up with a treatment plan to care for it. They are experienced in giving proper care and treatment, ensuring the restoration and care of normal spinal functions and position. There’s no way to escape normal spinal degeneration but with regular physical therapy, it’s possible to stave off new issues and provide some relief from the symptoms.

For more information about physical therapy visit Bethesda Metro Physical Therapy.

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Bethesda Metro Physical Therapy
6931 Arlington Road Suite T200A
Bethesda, MD 20814
(301) 907-2659


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Physical Therapy Bethesda MD Office Bethesda Metro Physical Therapy logo for footer

6931 Arlington Road Suite T200A

Bethesda, MD 20814