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Smoking and the Degeneration of Spinal Discs

A respected physician based in Abilene, Texas, Paul W. McDonough, MD, provides minimally invasive spine surgery to patients throughout the Big Country region. Concentrating on education and preventive care, Dr. Paul McDonough keeps his patients informed about the risks associated with smoking and other lifestyle factors.

A catalyst for degenerative disc disease, smoking has a damaging effect on the back. The damage reflects smoking’s role in the hardening of the arteries, which in turn impacts the flow of blood into areas such as discs and bones that are fed by small blood vessels. Spinal discs are particularly susceptible, as they do not receive a direct supply of blood and are reliant on the surrounding tissue for nutrients.

When starved of oxygen and other nutrients, a disc that collapses or that is injured cannot repair itself, which begins a degenerative downward spiral. A lack of oxygen and other nutrients can also worsen existing conditions such as herniated and bulging discs, which are associated with nerve compression and can cause chronic pain in the neck and back. Smokers with persistent back pain are often receiving a wake-up call from their bodies that they should give up tobacco.
Smoking and the Degeneration of Spinal Discs
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Smoking and the Degeneration of Spinal Discs

A respected physician based in Abilene, Texas, Paul W. McDonough, MD, provides minimally invasive spine surgery to patients throughout the Big Co Read More
0
35
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Published: