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Research in Medical & Engineering Sciences

Etiology and Risk Factors of Lumbar Intervertebral Disc (IVD) Degeneration

  • Open or Close Ujjwal K Debnath*

    Consultant Orthopaedics& Spine Surgeon, India

    *Corresponding author: Ujjwal K Debnath, Consultant Orthopaedics& Spine Surgeon, India

Submission: February 26, 2018; Published: April 24, 2018

DOI: 10.31031/RMES.2018.04.000597

ISSN : 2576-8816
Volume4 Issue5


Lumbar degenerative disc disease (DDD) is a progressive condition that exists along a continuum of pathologic processes. The disease starts as desiccation of the nucleus pulposus, to annular tearing, diffuse disc bulging, and disc space collapse, the degenerative process can occur over the course of decades, culminating in substantial debilitation. Clinically DDD presents with back pain and/or radiculopathy, can limit work and productivity. Additionally, the cost of treating this condition is especially high, and billions of dollars are spent on managing degenerative spinal processes annually.

In this review, the main focus is on the recent advances in studies on the most extensively examined risk factors and genetic factors associated with DDD in humans. A number of genetic defects have been correlated with structural and functional changes within the intervertebral disc (IVD), which may compromise the disc’s mechanical properties and metabolic activities. These studies have begun to shed light on the molecular basis of DDD, suggesting that genetic factors are important contributors to the onset and progression of IDD. By continuing to improve our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of DDD, specific early diagnosis and more effective treatments for this disabling disease may be possible in the future.

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