Degenerative Disease of the Spine

      Degenerative disease of the spine is a definition that includes a wide spectrum of degenerative abnormalities. Degeneration involves bony structures and the intervertebral disk, although many aspects of spine degeneration are strictly linked because the main common pathogenic factor is identified in chronic overload. During life the spine undergoes continuous changes as a response to physiologic axial load. These age-related changes are similar to pathologic degenerative changes and are a common asymptomatic finding in adults and elderly persons. A mild degree of degenerative changes is paraphysiologic and should be considered pathologic only if abnormalities determine symptoms. Imaging allows complete evaluation of static and dynamic factors related to degenerative disease of the spine and is useful in diagnosing the different aspects of spine degeneration.
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