Posture and Degenerative Disk Disease (DDD)

Degenerative Disc Disease (DDD) is one of the most common causes of back pain, and also one of the most misunderstood. Many patients diagnosed with low back pain caused by degenerative disc disease are left wondering exactly what this diagnosis means for them.

Degenerative Disc Disease

In the majority of cases, (DDD) is caused by irregular oblique and torsion constraints of pressure on the intervertebreal discs.

An intervertebral disc has a 
lamellar structure, and is a super shock absorber that permits to 
absorb shock in every direction of space. However it does not perform well when in “torsion”.
So what causes a disk to be in torsion? Postural Imbalance. Researches made on posture since more than one hundred of years ago bring us to consider the postural system as a whole.

In normal orthostatic posture from the side view (sagittal), the scapular and gluteal planes should be aligned. From the front (frontal plane) , the thoracic and pelvic girdle, should be perfectly horizontal. From the top (transverse plane), there should be no rotation of the scapular and pelvic girdle.

Transverse Plane

If any of these landmarks are not respected, there will hyperconstraints of joints, ligaments and muscles of spine and the intervertebreal disk will be under oblique and torsion pressures.

The first stage of Degenerative disk disease (DDD) consists of the protrusion of the nucleus pulpous. At 
that point, the yellow ligament and the membrane and are still 
present. If unaddressed, 
the second stage of Degenerative disk disease (DDD) is a rupture of the membrane causing the disk to protrude; causing disk herniation.

So what now? If we remove the disk, it will take care of the problem between the vertebra and the pinch on the root nerve, so sciatica or whatever issue 
will disappear. However, the surgeon will have removed the last shock absorber of the 
spine (although the disk is degenerated, it still useful as a shock 
absorber).

Over time, the vertebra on top and below will get closer and put
 posterior pressure on the facet joints that will eventually provoke arthrosis, 
inflammation, and epiduritis. The facet joint that are suffering will contract the muscles to 
prevent movement which will lead to tightness and this tightness 
increases the constraint, and these constraints will go to the higher 
and lower level of the spine.

It is difficult to consider subjects that present a postural clinical imbalance as normal subjects, for several reasons:

  • The subjects having a posture clinically well balanced do not suffer from low backpain;
  • The patients who are suffering always present an obvious postural imbalance;
  • When postural system inputs are out of order that brings about postural imbalance, the body never cures itself, on the contrary it integrates the new postural scheme and considers it as normal;

So when we a surgeon operates a discal herniation, (and I am not implying that it should
 never be done), is he treating the symptom or the cause?

About Annette Verpillot

Annette Verpillot is the founder of Posturepro, a diagnostics company specializing in Postural Recalibration and neuromuscular restoration. From an early age, Verpillot participated in a multitude of sports from 100 meter sprinting to swimming to football, skiing and rock-climbing. This diversity in the field of sports enabled her to have a global vision and drove her to seek out the best treatments available for her clientele. At first, she focused on classic post-graduate education by taking courses on manual therapy. An incessant curiosity and ambition to find the answer to "what can I do better?" led her to associate herself with orthopedic surgeon Dr. Bernard Bricot. Since 2008, Verpillot has been working along the side of Dr. Bricot and has received special training in the education and development of Posturology. Annette has had numerous opportunities to teach Posturology to professionals and Strength Coaches and Neuro Muscular Densits at the prestigious Las Vegas Institute and Dawson academy, on the benefits of incorporating Posturology into their protocols. Today she is one of the most experienced and regarded Posturologists in North America. Annette Verpillot continues to address the various factors that come into play in achieving optimum results and to stir interest in and amaze professionals who have an open mind and who truly wish to help their patients.

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