Author(s): Sehgal N, Fortin JD
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Abstract Internal disc disruption is a common cause of disabling low back pain in a substantial number of young, healthy adults. Crock described this painful entity and reported annular fissures that distort the internal architecture of the disc; Externally the disc appears relatively intact and undeformed. A clinical diagnosis of internal disc disruption, in absence of objective clinical findings, is extremely difficult. The only convincing means to establish the diagnosis is provocation discography. Unfortunately, this procedure is controversial, making the existence of internal disc disruption suspect. Recent studies indicate the existence of a biochemical/ biomechanical model of discogenic pain, which explains the disabling low back pain in some subjects with no objective evidence of nerve-root compromise. However, a reluctance to acknowledge internal disc disruption as a valid clinical entity delays diagnosis and treatment. Failure to identify and treat this entity early and aggressively results in longterm disability, thereby perpetuating the enigma of chronic low back pain.
This article was published in Pain Physician
and referenced in Journal of Pain & Relief