Aging Spine

Many people accept back pain  as just a part of growing old without ever finding out the cause of the pain.  Several diseases can contribute to low back pain as the spine ages including  disc degeneration, lumbar spinal stenosis and spondylolisthesis. The key to  preventing an increase in low back pain is to catch the onset of these diseases  early and set up a long-term treatment plan.


Disc  Degeneration


Degenerative disc  disease is one of the most common conditions in an aging spine. Over time, the  discs between the vertebrae begin to wear and lose their flexibility. As this  happens, the spine becomes more rigid and sometimes painful. Degenerating discs  are natural and only cause trouble when they begin to compress and pinch the  nerves or spinal cord around them. To learn more about this condition, read this  article on degenerative disc disease.


Lumbar Spinal  Stenosis


Another problem that  can plague the aging spine is lumbar spinal stenosis. This condition causes the  space where the spinal cord and nerve roots are to begin to narrow and compress  the spinal cord. When this happens, it can begin to become painful and cause  weakness in the legs. Lumbar spinal stenosis typically affects people over the  age of 50. To learn more about lumbar spinal stenosis, read this article on  spinal stenosis.




Spondylolisthesis is when a vertebra slips forward and  over the vertebrae below it. Many times, this does not cause a problem for the  patient. Only when the slipped vertebra irritates a nearby nerve root does the  condition become painful. Like other conditions that plague an aging spine,  spondylolisthesis can be treated. To learn more about this condition, read this  article on spondylolisthesis.


Remember, the important thing is to catch these  conditions early before they become a bigger problem later. Consult with a  physician to determine a treatment plan for  you.