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Neurosciences and Behavioral Health Center

Cervical Degenerative Disc Disease

As we age, our vertebral discs, which serve as the spine’s shock absorbers, gradually dry out, which affects their strength and resiliency. This can lead to degenerative disc disease (DDD).

DDD of the cervical spine is a relatively common condition for aging adults, but you may not know you have it. Many times, you only become aware of the condition when being examined for another health problem or during a routine checkup. To diagnose DDD, your doctor may order diagnostic tests, including X-rays and discography.

Treatment Options

Find out more about nonoperative treatments for DDD.

In addition to these treatments, we’ll help you learn about healthy posture and proper body mechanics.

Surgical Treatment

If symptoms of cervical degenerative disc disease persist, despite nonoperative treatment, you might need further diagnostic tests such as:

  • CT scan
  • MRI scan
  • Myelography
  • Discography

You may require surgery if your surgeon discovers that one or more of the intervertebral discs have herniated.

A common technique is an anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF). This involves a frontal approach to remove the damaged disc and fuse the adjacent vertebrae with bone graft and screws or plates. 

Make an Appointment

Call 434.243.3633.

 

Content was created using EBSCO’s Health Library. Edits to original content made by Rector and Visitors of the University of Virginia. This information is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

Make an Appointment

Call the Spine Center at 434.243.3633

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