Degenerative Spine Conditions Center

Your spine is subjected to millions of cycles of stress over the course of a lifetime. So, most people experience some level of degeneration in the spine well before age 50. In many cases, degenerative spine conditions come with no symptoms. But if you have back pain that makes it difficult to do the things you enjoy, it’s time to see a spine specialist.

Degenerative Spine Conditions We Treat

There are many age-related changes that may affect your spine, and numerous conditions that may result. Our team can help diagnose and treat spine problems related to:

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Surgery for Degenerative Spine Conditions

For most of these conditions, nonsurgical approaches such as physical therapy, steroid injections and massage are considered the first line of treatment. However, they don’t offer the desired relief for everyone.

It may be time to consider spine surgery if your symptoms significantly interfere with your lifestyle, or if you experience steadily increasing bowel or bladder dysfunction, balance issues, or shooting pains or weakness in the arms or legs.

Our team can help you decide if surgery is the best option and determine if you are a candidate for one of our minimally invasive techniques.

Minimally Invasive Surgery

“Minimally invasive” is a term that describes all techniques designed to minimize blood loss and healthy tissue damage during a surgery. Our surgeons routinely use these techniques, including robotic assistance, and develop new methods and technologies to help you get back to your life as soon as possible.

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Our Degenerative Spine Specialists

Patient Stories

  • Advances in Neurosurgical Spine Surgery: Paul's Story

    Paul had mobility challenges and back pain for 30 years due to bulging disks in his spine. He found relief after a consultation with Johns Hopkins neurosurgeon Nicholas Theodore, who used the latest technology in spine surgery to get Paul back to fully living his life without severe pain. 

    Paul with his wife by the beach
  • Degenerative Disk Disease: Jan’s Story

    At 78, Jan Greer wanted to stay active and athletic. Herniated disks, stenosis and other degenerative back problems were causing him unbearable pain. When the pain became too much to bear, he turned to Dr. Ali Bydon at Johns Hopkins.

    Jan and his wife pose together at an event
  • Thoracic Disc Herniation: Pedro's Story

    Pedro Gil was hardly able to move before he came to Johns Hopkins. His thoracic herniated disc had calcified, causing excruciating pain, weakness, numbness and even paralysis. Other doctors told Pedro he might never walk again. At Johns Hopkins, the message was different.

    Pedro poses with his wife at a wedding