Is endplate sclerosis serious? (2023)

Asked by: Christop Bauch

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Associated Conditions

Studies have found evidence that such lesions on endplates in the lumbar region

lumbar region

The lumbar spine is a part of your back comprised of five bones called vertebrae. These bones help to provide mobility and stability to your back and spinal column and are an attachment point for many muscles and ligaments. Problems with the lumbar spine may cause pain and limited motion in your back or hips. › lumbar-spine-anatomy-296...

of the back are associated with low back pain. 3 In its advanced stages, endplate degeneration is called endplate sclerosis. Endplate damage can be difficult to detect, even with diagnostic imaging.

What causes degenerative endplate changes?

There are several current theories about the etiology of vertebral endplate changes. In their initial paper, Modic et al. postulated that the changes were a result of primary mechanical stress on the endplates. Subsequent studies identified lumbar instability as a mechanical factor associated with type 1 changes.

What are endplates?

Vertebral body endplates are anatomically-discrete structures that form the interface between the vertebral bodies and the adjacent intervertebral discs. They are constituted peripherally by an epiphyseal bone ring and centrally by a cartilaginous layer.

What does endplate degenerative changes mean?

Background. Vertebral endplate (Modic) changes are bone marrow and endplate lesions visible in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). They are shown to be associated with degenerative intervertebral disc disease [1–3].

What can you do for degenerative disk disease?

Treatment may include occupational therapy, physical therapy, or both, special exercises, medications, losing weight, and surgery. Medical options include injecting the joints next to the damaged disc with steroids and a local anesthetic. These are called facet joint injections. They can provide effective pain relief.

34 related questions found

Can you become paralyzed from degenerative disc disease?

A severely herniated disc can cause paralysis. Disc herniation is most common in the lower back (lumbar spine) and neck (cervical spine).

How should you sleep when you have degenerative disc disease?

Degenerative disc disease

Sleeping on the stomach is typically preferred, as this position can relieve pressure on the disc space. People with degenerative disc disease may feel most comfortable using a relatively firm mattress while placing a flat pillow under the stomach and hips.

Can you live a normal life with degenerative disc disease?

Can you live a normal life with degenerative disc disease? The answer is yes, even it forces you to be out of work for an extended amount of time. Do not give up. There are many methods of pain relief that you can do at home that can help you live a normal life.

Does drinking water help degenerative disc disease?

Eventually, it can lead to pain and swelling and even a bulging disc or herniated disc. Drinking water to adequately replenish the discs with the amount water needed to work properly can reduce the likelihood of developing back pain.

What are the stages of degenerative disc disease?

The 3 Stages of Spinal Degeneration

  • Stage 1 – Dysfunction. As the spine begins to deteriorate, its curvature begins to change and show signs of misalignment. ...
  • Stage 2 – Dehydration of spinal discs and beginning of spurring. ...
  • Stage 3 – Stabilization. ...
  • Chiropractic treatment for spinal degeneration.

Is endplate A sclerosis?

The study showed that sclerosis can occur in endplates with MCs type I, II and III. In patients with endplate sclerosis on plain radiographs or CT scans, the endplate can still represent an inflammatory process associated with chronic lower back pain.

Does end plate sclerosis cause pain?

Theoretically, due to the histological characteristics of Modic changes, they may cause low back pain. However, it is difficult to distinguish this low back pain from the low back pain caused by disc degeneration in clinical research.

What is sclerosis of the spine?

Sclerosis of a bone is a condition in which the bone itself thickens due to excessive calcium deposits. These growths on the bone are known as sclerotic lesions. Sclerosis can affect any of the bones in the body, including the spinal vertebrae. These lesions can be indicative of a more serious underlying condition.

What does endplate sclerosis mean?

2 When endplates begin to deteriorate, inflammation increases and lesions can develop. Studies have found evidence that such lesions on endplates in the lumbar region of the back are associated with low back pain. 3 In its advanced stages, endplate degeneration is called endplate sclerosis.

What is the best exercise for degenerative disc disease?

Regular aerobic exercise, such as walking, swimming, or taking a low-impact aerobics class, has been shown to help relieve pain, promote a healthy body weight, and improve overall strength and mobility—all important factors in managing DDD.

What foods should you avoid with degenerative disc disease?

Foods To Avoid While Experiencing Back Pain

  • Sugary Foods. Sugary foods are among the worst foods that you can eat. ...
  • Vegetable Oil. Most vegetables are high in omega 6 fatty acids. ...
  • Refined Grains. It is best to eat whole grains instead of refined grains. ...
  • Dairy Products. ...
  • Processed Corn. ...
  • Red Meat. ...
  • Foods With Chemicals.

What is the best painkiller for degenerative disc disease?

Over-the-counter NSAIDs most commonly used to treat low back pain from degenerative disc disease include:

  • Ibuprofen (such as Advil, Motrin)
  • Naproxen (such as Aleve, Naprosyn)

Will degenerative disc disease get worse?

While it is true that disc degeneration is likely to progress over time, the pain from degenerative disc disease usually does not get worse and in fact usually feels better given enough time.

What foods are good for degenerative disc disease?

Leafy greens are one of the very best things anyone can eat, offering tons of vitamin K and helping protect the body from inflammation, Osteoporosis and things like Degenerative Disc Disease. Think spinach, kale, cabbage and other similar produce items.

Is it hard to get disability for degenerative disc disease?

Degenerative Disc Disease, or DDD, is among the most common impairments for which the Social Security Administration (SSA) receives disability applications. While it is a qualifying disability under certain circumstances, proving your condition meets the SSA's duration and severity level requirements can be difficult.

Can you live with degenerative disc disease without surgery?

According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, 98% of disc problems get better without surgery. Most people with degenerative disc disease will be able to control their symptoms with exercise, hot and cold therapy, over-the-counter medicine, and medical treatment, including prescription medication or steroid injections.

Can heavy lifting cause degenerative disc disease?

Degenerative disc disease is often part of the natural aging process. But WebMd says these changes are more likely to occur in people who do heavy physical work such as repeated heavy lifting. A sudden injury that causes a herniated disc (such as a fall) may also begin the degeneration process.

What's the worst way to sleep?

The worst sleep position: On your stomach

“This position puts the most pressure on your spine's muscles and joints because it flattens the natural curve of your spine,” he says. “Sleeping on your stomach also forces you to turn your neck, which can cause neck and upper back pain.”

What is the healthiest sleep position?

Flat on your back. Sleeping on your back offers the most health benefits. Not only does it make it easiest to protect your spine, it can also help relieve hip and knee pain.

Does lying on the floor straighten your back?

It is possible that sleeping on the floor may improve posture. Indeed, the spine is more prone to curving on a soft surface, so sleeping on a firmer surface may help align and straighten the neck and spine.


What does mild endplate sclerosis mean? ›

Studies have found that the development of lesions on endplates in the lumbar spine is associated with increasing levels of low back pain. In its advanced stages, endplate degeneration is called endplate sclerosis (sclerosis meaning "hardening").

How is endplate sclerosis treated? ›

Doctors from all disciplines treated this disease with physical rehabilitation, injections and ultimately surgery all with varying degrees of success.

Is endplate sclerosis part of multiple sclerosis? ›

Sclerosis can occur in endplates with any type of MCs. However, the clinical and animal study suggests that sclerosis is greatest in endplates showing type III MCs.

What is the treatment for endplate changes? ›

Treatment and Progression

Conventional treatment for patients with back pain and associated type 1 degenerative endplate changes has traditionally been conservative, including anti-inflammatory medication, steroid injections, and physical therapy.

What causes endplate sclerosis? ›

Excessive Activation of TGFβ by Spinal Instability Causes Vertebral Endplate Sclerosis.

Is sclerosis of the spine serious? ›

Sclerosis can affect any of the bones in the body, including the spinal vertebrae. These lesions can be indicative of a more serious underlying condition. For this reason these types of lesions should be investigated by a qualified physician to make sure there is nothing more serious lurking beneath the surface.

Is sclerosis of the spine painful? ›

Below are some of the ways in which MS can cause spine pain: Muscle stiffness: Patients with MS often experience muscle stiffness. The less the muscles are used, the more uncomfortable they will be, thus creating pain in areas such as the back. Immobility: As MS progresses, many patients are limited in their movement.

What causes sclerosis of the vertebrae? ›

Narrowing of the intervertebral disc space with sclerosis of the adjacent vertebral bodies may occur as a consequence of infection, neoplasia, trauma, or rheumatic disease. Some patients have been described with backache and these radiological appearances without any primary cause being apparent.

Can sclerosis of the spine be cured? ›

Spinal stenosis can't be cured but responds to treatment.

But Dr. Hennenhoefer says you can live a normal life with a spinal stenosis diagnosis and can work on improving your mobility and comfort.

What is endplate sclerosis and spurring? ›

Endplate osteophytes: Bone spurs that develop at the top or bottom edges of the vertebrae where they interact with the disc. Multilevel endplate osteophytes: Bone spurs that develop at both the top and bottom endplates, thereby affecting more than one vertebra or vertebral disc.

What is the difference between sclerosis and multiple sclerosis? ›

The term multiple sclerosis refers to the distinctive areas of scar tissue (sclerosis—also called plaques or lesions) that result from the attack on myelin by the immune system.

Is sclerosis of the spine the same as multiple sclerosis? ›

The term “multiple sclerosis” refers to the many areas of scarring (sclerosis) that result from destruction of the tissues that wrap around nerves (myelin sheath) in the brain and spinal cord. This destruction is called demyelination.

Are endplate changes painful? ›

Vertebral endplates are much more nerve-dense than spinal discs, which means they're more susceptible to pain than discs. Vertebral endplate nerve dysfunction is when the endplate and the nerves within it become compressed, causing a great deal of pain.

What causes endplate changes? ›

Morphological changes to the endplates are usually seen with advancing age but are also evident in association with pathological changes to the nucleus and annulus in advanced stages of degenerative disc disease [53].

What is discogenic vertebral endplate sclerosis? ›

Discogenic vertebral sclerosis is often a sclerotic and focal lesion (but it can be lytic or even mixed lytic-sclerotic) which is always adjacent to the endplate, and the associated disc space should be narrow. Osteophytes may be present.

What does the medical term sclerosis mean in the spine? ›

Spinal sclerosis is a degenerative condition that can develop on your spine. It can affect not only your nervous system but your vertebrae as well. Any type of sclerosis refers to body tissue becoming abnormally hard. Once it does, it will be extremely resistant to changing back to the way it was.

What does sclerosis of vertebrae mean? ›

Narrowing of the intervertebral disc space with sclerosis of the adjacent vertebral bodies may occur as a consequence of infection, neoplasia, trauma, or rheumatic disease. Some patients have been described with backache and these radiological appearances without any primary cause being apparent.

What are the symptoms of sclerosis of the spine? ›

MS lesions on the cervical spine can cause similar symptoms to when they appear in other areas, such as numbness, weakness, and balance issues. In addition, they can cause loss of sensation in both the shoulders and arms. For some, lesions on the cervical spine can lead to paralysis in all limbs.

What happens if sclerosis is left untreated? ›

Healthy adults have a small amount of brain atrophy due to natural ageing, but in many people with untreated MS, brain atrophy occurs at a much faster rate. Current MS treatments aim to prevent new central nervous system lesions forming that lead to irreversible damage and brain atrophy.

Can you live a normal life with sclerosis? ›

You may have to adapt your daily life if you're diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS), but with the right care and support many people can lead long, active and healthy lives.

Does sclerosis go away? ›

Multiple sclerosis is a chronic condition, which means it's long-lasting, and there's no cure for it.

How do you treat sclerosis of the bone? ›

Sclerotic lesions due to metastasized cancers usually require radiation treatment. In addition, your doctor might prescribe medications, such as bisphosphonates, to slow down destruction of the bone. In more severe cases, you may also need surgery to stabilize the affected bone.

What does sclerosis pain feel like? ›

These pain sensations feel like burning, stabbing, sharp and squeezing sensations. In MS you can experience acute neuropathic pain and chronic neuropathic pain. Acute Neuropathic Pain is sometimes an initial symptom of MS or may be part of an MS relapse. Acute means it has a rapid onset and is of short duration.

How does sclerosis feel? ›

Those symptoms include loss of vision in an eye, loss of power in an arm or leg or a rising sense of numbness in the legs. Other common symptoms associated with MS include spasms, fatigue, depression, incontinence issues, sexual dysfunction, and walking difficulties.

Is bone sclerosis common? ›

Sclerotic bone lesions are rare; commonly affects the axial skeleton (pelvis, spine, skull, ribs) and the patients are often symptomatic as opposed to the patients with lytic lesions who rarely have any symptoms.

How is sclerosis of the spine diagnosed? ›

No one test can provide a definitive MS diagnosis. To understand what's causing symptoms, your healthcare provider will do a physical exam. You may also have blood tests and imaging tests, such as MRI. An MRI looks for evidence of lesions (areas of damage) in the brain or spinal cord that indicate multiple sclerosis.

How long does it take to recover from sclerosis? ›

While the patient will be able to return to some limited activities in two to four weeks, the full recovery period is typically at least 6 to 12 months of steady progress achieved by following a care plan outlined by the medical team.

What is the endplate? ›

The end plate is a bilayer of cartilage and bone that separates the intervertebral disks from the adjacent vertebrae (Fig.

What does endplate changes mean? ›

Vertebral endplate changes/modic changes (MC) are the MRI-images of inflammatory vertebral endplate damage that are often related to general disc degeneration. • In patients with prolonged back pain, the prevalence of MC is 40%. • In individuals with MC, more than 90% will have back pain within 1 year.

How do you treat end plate osteophytes? ›

How are bone spurs treated?
  1. Ice to reduce swelling.
  2. Over-the-counter pain relievers, such as acetaminophen or NSAIDS like ibuprofen.
  3. Rest.
  4. Supportive shoes or shoe inserts.
  5. Weight loss to decrease joint and bone stress.
Nov 16, 2020

Does sclerosis mean arthritis? ›

While bone sclerosis in general can be related to other conditions, sclerosis of the subchondral bone in joints is linked to osteoarthritis. Some studies show that subchondral sclerosis can happen before osteoarthritis damages joint cartilage.

What are the three types of sclerosis? ›

There are three main types of MS - relapsing, primary progressive and secondary progressive. MS affects everyone differently. Even if you have the same type of MS as someone else, you probably won't experience the same symptoms in the same way.

What are the two types of sclerosis? ›

The most common types of MS are: Relapsing-Remitting MS (RRMS) Secondary-Progressive MS (SPMS)

What can be mistaken for multiple sclerosis? ›

Conditions That Can Seem Like MS
  • Epstein-Barr Virus.
  • Vitamin B12 Deficiency.
  • Diabetes.
  • Nerve Damage.
  • Eye Problems.
  • Stroke.
  • Lupus and Other Autoimmune Diseases.
  • Parkinson's Disease.
Mar 2, 2023

Is multiple sclerosis inflammation or degeneration? ›

Abstract. Multiple sclerosis (MS) is characterized by multiple areas of inflammation, demyelination and neurodegeneration. Multiple molecular and cellular components mediate neuroinflammation in MS.

Is multiple sclerosis autoimmune or degenerative? ›

MS is an autoimmune condition. This is when something goes wrong with the immune system and it mistakenly attacks a healthy part of the body – in this case, the brain or spinal cord of the nervous system. In MS, the immune system attacks the layer that surrounds and protects the nerves called the myelin sheath.

What are Endplates in lumbar spine? ›

Vertebral End Plates Definition

A vertebral end plate is the transition region where a vertebral body and intervertebral disc interface with each other. A vertebral end plate is commonly described as consisting of 2 layers: Cartilaginous layer (also called cartilaginous endplate) that fuses with the disc.

Where is the endplate of a vertebra? ›

The interface between the vertebral trabeculae and intervertebral disc is the endplate, which comprises the cartilaginous endplate and osseous endplate [1]. The osseous endplate virtually is the shell of the vertebral body and, thus, is also called the vertebral endplate.

What is endplate stenosis? ›

This type of stenosis occurs when the narrowing extends beyond the neural foramen. Far Lateral Stenosis can be caused by bone spurs (endplate osteophytes), far lateral herniated discs, facet joint hypertrophy, or Bertolotti's syndrome. In some cases, foraminal stenosis and far lateral stenosis may be combined.

What are Type 1 and Type 2 endplate changes? ›

Modic Type I changes are commonly associated with lower back pain as an acute inflammatory process and bone marrow swelling. Whereas the fatty replacement of the healthy red bone marrow is the cause of Modic Type II changes! Modic Type II changes are the result of reduced blood flow to the affected bone marrow.

What is Type 1 endplate change? ›

Modic type I endplate change is the most controversial and important of the three types described (see Modic endplate change). It is seen on MRI of the spine and represents the presence of low T1 and high T2 signal within the bone marrow of a vertebral body adjacent to a disk. Type 1 change can enhance and be painful.

What is low back vertebral endplate pain? ›

Vertebrogenic pain is a distinct type of chronic low back pain caused by damage to vertebral endplates, the interface between the disc and the vertebral body.

What is Modic Type 3 endplate sclerosis? ›

Modic type III lesions are thought to represent extensive subchondral bone sclerosis within the bone marrow of adjacent endplate. The pathological performance of Schmorl's nodes is cystic lesions around indistinct sclerotic margins and beneath the cartilaginous endplate.

What is degenerative disc disease sclerosis? ›

Degenerative disk disease occurs when the cushioning in your spine begins to wear away. The condition is most common in older adults. After age 40, most people experience some spinal degeneration. The right treatment can lead to pain relief and increased mobility.

What is a degenerative sclerosis? ›

A degeneration or 'wear and tear' of articular (joint surface) cartilage usually accompanied by an overgrowth of bone (osteophytes), narrowing of the joint space, sclerosis or hardening of bone at the joint surface, and deformity in joints.

Is sclerosis of the spine the same as MS? ›

The term “multiple sclerosis” refers to the many areas of scarring (sclerosis) that result from destruction of the tissues that wrap around nerves (myelin sheath) in the brain and spinal cord. This destruction is called demyelination. These layers form the myelin sheath.

What is the difference between sclerosis and sclerosis? ›

Summary of the key differences

Although both MS and SS are autoimmune disorders, they are distinct conditions. Multiple sclerosis impacts only the central nervous system, which includes the brain and spinal cord. In contrast, SS is a multisystem disease, meaning it can impact multiple areas of the body.

What happens if you have sclerosis? ›

In multiple sclerosis, the protective coating on the nerve fibers (myelin) is damaged and may eventually be destroyed. Depending on where the nerve damage occurs, MS can affect vision, sensation, coordination, movement, and bladder or bowel control.

What is the main cause of sclerosis? ›

Multiple sclerosis is caused by your immune system mistakenly attacking the brain and nerves. It's not clear why this happens but it may be a combination of genetic and environmental factors.

Does sclerosis mean inflammation? ›

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic, inflammatory disease of unknown etiology that involves an immune-mediated attack on the central nervous system. Myelin and the oligodendrocytes that form myelin appear to be the primary targets of the inflammatory attack, although the axons themselves are also damaged.

Why is sclerosis so painful? ›

MS can damage the nerves that affect your muscles. This can cause acute or paroxysmal pain in the form of spasms. Your arms and legs might shoot out uncontrollably and might have pain like cramping or pulling. Nerve pain can also be chronic in the form of painful or unusual sensations on your skin.


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