As a disc at the front of the spine drops in height it causes overriding of the bone-to-bone junctions (called the facet joints) at the back of the spine. The upper vertebra settles down on the one below, causing bony rub between parts of the spine which should only have fleeting contact. Early on, this simply inflames the soft tissues around the facet joints but eventually it causes arthritic change as it erodes the cartilage covering the bone. Facet joint trouble also is a relatively common form of low-back pain.
Figure 2 As the interceding disc loses height the facets at the back suffer by being forced to bear more load.
Was this article helpful?
Tired Having Back Pains All The Time, But You Choose To Ignore It? Every year millions of people see their lives and favorite activities limited by back pain. They forego activities they once loved because of it and in some cases may not even be able to perform their job as well as they once could due to back pain.