Wrinkles, frown lines, smile lines, disc degeneration…natural events with growing older (and, might we add, wiser!). (New Hampshire Spine and Sport takes care of many wise Southern New Hampshire chiropractic patients!) Discs degenerate. As a matter of fact, discs are stated to begin degenerating in the 2nd decade of life. By your 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s, it would be less common to not have disc degeneration. Research today is presenting some promise in the care of disc degeneration with even the potential being floated in the literature of potential disc regeneration. This is amazing to your Southern New Hampshire chiropractor and to chiropractic patients everywhere!
THE ROLE OF THE DISC
The disc is the spine’s shock absorber. The disc opposes the compressive loads put on the spine during movement. How is it able to do this? It has an elevated proteoglycan aggrecan content. Proteolysis is the loss of aggrecan that occurs with degeneration. Researchers suggest that restoration of aggrecan loss in the nucleus of the disc is possible via cells that can synthesize aggrecan and be borne by the disc’s matrix. (1) This offers hope to exploration of possible disc regeneration and its potential to ease back pain.
AGING AND DISC DEGENERATION
Disc degeneration is a well-documented source of low back pain. What is the disc made of? Aggrecan is the key component. Aggrecan is the key proteoglycan structure in the extracellular matrix that makes up the disc. Aggrecan is substantial, made up of varied glycosaminoglycan chains. It can form more aggregates when joined with hyaluronan. The glycosaminoglycan chains are negatively charged and bind to water molecules which are vital to keep the disc hydrated enough to permit the disc to withstand compressive loading it is made to do. (2) Disc degeneration gets down to the molecules that form the disc. New Hampshire Spine and Sport gets down there, also! These authors posit that aggrecan-based therapies for disc regeneration may well be possible.
THERAPY FOR POTENTIAL DISC REGENERATION
Chondroitin sulfate is showing itself to be such a therapy. Chondroitin sulfate’s potential benefit was first discussed clear back in 1966 by Cole, Ghosh and Taylor. Chondroitin sulfate is described as being the source of glycosaminoglycan synthesis in the disc. (3,4,5) Combining nutrition with distraction spinal manipulation indicated ability for potential disc regeneration. (6) New Hampshire Spine and Sport incorporates spinal disc nutrition with spinal distraction manipulation for the best possible clinical outcome.
CONTACT New Hampshire Spine and Sport
Listen to this PODCAST with Dr. Tyler Lomnicki on The Back Doctors Podcast with Dr. Michael Johnson as he describes The Cox® Technic System of Spinal Pain Management incorporation of gentle distraction manipulation and nutrition for this patient’s relief and management of disc herniation pain.