Wrinkles, frown lines, smile lines, disc degeneration…natural events with growing older (and, might we add, wiser!). (Young Chiropractic takes care of many wise Easley chiropractic patients!) Discs degenerate. In fact, discs are stated to start 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. Today’s research is showing some promise in the care of disc degeneration with even the potential being proposed in the literature of potential disc regeneration. This is amazing to your Easley chiropractor and to chiropractic patients everywhere!
THE ROLE OF THE DISC
The disc acts as the spine’s shock absorber. The disc resists the compressive loads put on the spine during movement. How is it able to do this? Its an elevated proteoglycan aggrecan content. Proteolysis is the loss of aggrecan that happens 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 supported by the disc’s matrix. (1) This offers hope to exploration of conceivable disc regeneration and its potential to ease back pain.
AGING AND DISC DEGENERATION
Disc degeneration is a well-documented cause 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 necessary to keep the disc hydrated enough to permit the disc to tolerate compressive loading it is made to do. (2) Disc degeneration gets down to the molecules that make up the disc. Young Chiropractic gets down there, also! These authors posit that aggrecan-based therapies for disc regeneration are possible.
THERAPY FOR POTENTIAL DISC REGENERATION
Chondroitin sulfate is proving 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 explained 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) Young Chiropractic includes spinal disc nutrition with spinal distraction manipulation for the optimal clinical outcome.
CONTACT Young Chiropractic
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 integration of gentle distraction manipulation and nutrition for this patient’s relief and management of disc herniation pain.