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Old 04-14-2013, 06:16 AM   #1
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Vacuum Disc Phenomenon in the spinal disc

Vacuum Disc Phenomenon. Had a recent back X-ray with me bent over to move the vertebra about. Reviewed the X-ray results with the doctor and he pointed out areas of "vacuum" within the discs. I know/understand how gases can come out of the body (pressure and released pressure) and is often related to the DJD process. My question is is: does this phenomenon cause any physical issues with the back?

 
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Old 04-14-2013, 07:04 AM   #2
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Re: Vacuum Disc Phenomenon in the spinal disc

Vacuum sign in the disc is a sign of drying, deterioration and aging of the disc. It can be accompanied by back pain if the drying out is sufficient to cause the disc to shrink and flatten, which slightly displaces the vertebrae. It would be good to look at the discs showing the vacuum sign and compare the height of them to the height of the normal ones. This degenerative process in the disc occurs over many years and can be associated with other arthritic processes such as bone spur formation, which can eventually press on nerves. Findings on xray often do not correlate well with symptoms. It is possible to have xray findings with no symptoms, and vice versa.

 
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Old 04-14-2013, 10:09 AM   #3
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Re: Vacuum Disc Phenomenon in the spinal disc

L-2 through L-5 discs are not the same thickness as the disc around L-1. Ongoing back pain and spasms along w noted spondylolisthesis between L-4 and L-5. Do the vacuum processes contribute to any discomfort or are they simply a by-product of the deteriorating discs?

 
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Old 04-14-2013, 10:12 AM   #4
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Re: Vacuum Disc Phenomenon in the spinal disc

They are an effect of the deterioration, not a cause of pain.

 
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