Talking smarter than your doctor about back pain

The disc: Is it degenerating, bulging, herniating? What is it?

Degenerative disc disease. I hear that a lot. Please don’t panic if you’re told you have DDD. It’s expected that you will have some degeneration of the disc as you age.

The “spondys”

The following terms are quite the mouthful. If you don’t look closely you might think I’m just using the same word three times over: spondylosis, spondylolysis, and spondylolisthesis.

Radicular pain

Radicular pain, sometimes also referred to as radiculitis, sounds a bit, well…rediculous (had to get that in there). But the symptoms are anything but comical.


The nerves we’re discussing have two major functions: sensation and muscle activation. Radiculopathy involves changes in one or both of these functions, which is referred to as a neurological symptom.

Medical fear-mongering

Fear-mongering might be a bit of a surprising topic to complete this piece, but it captures the entire reason I have constructed this article, along with some previous and some to come.



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Seth Hampton

Seth Hampton

CEO of Zona Physical Therapy. Empowering you to relieve your pain and improve your performance now.