In order to provide the simplest definition, let's first break down the word. In Latin, Spondy means spine and losis means problem. So, therefore, spondylosis is simply a problem with your spine. Used as an umbrella term, Spondylosis refers to degenerative changes in the spine and may include:
Spondylosis can affect any level of the spine:
The following structures in your spine are affected by Spondylosis:
Spondylosis is the result of degenerative changes in the spine. Some of these changes may occur over time as we age. These degenerative changes include:
With age, the discs in the spine lose water causing the disc height to decrease and begin to dry out and become weakened. This may result in a disc bulge which may cause compression of nerve roots.
Degeneration of the discs results in increased pressure on the facet joints. This increased pressure causes the cartilage of the facet joints to wear away and develop arthritis over time.
As cartilage breaks down, it can result in bone grinding against bone in the joint, leading to increased friction and loss of mobility. The stress on the bony surface may stimulate new bone growth. Over time, this may lead to the development of bone spurs which can narrow the opening which the nerves pass through causing compression on the nerves, muscles or ligaments.
Your symptoms will depend on where the Spondylosis is affecting your spine. Spondylosis commonly occurs in the neck and the low back. Because the neck supports the weight of the head throughout a wide range of movements makes it more susceptible. The low back is also prone to develop spondylosis because it supports and distributes a majority of the body's weight.
The Jacksonville Orthopedic Institute is committed to helping patients with Spondylosis. The quick answer is the JOI Spine Team has many treatment options available to treat Spondylosis, including:
Surgery is seldom performed to treat Spondylosis, however, is necessary if you are experiencing neurological issues including:
The purpose of surgery is to remove what's compressing the nerve, causing the pain, and then fuse the spine to limit movement.
Spondylosis can be thought of as a "cause and effect" scenario. Whether you are Linebacker for the Jacksonville Jaguars, or a receptionist in an office, the stresses of life cause wear and tear in the spine It's a snowball effect, one change occurs, which then results in more degeneration in your spine. The combination of all these changes may lead to spondylosis and its symptoms.
If you would like to learn more about low back pain, got to our trending section at JOIonline.net or this article: Low Back Pain While Standing. Please call JOI-2000, schedule online or click below for an appointment.