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Disc replacement won't solve the issue!

This post got quite a bit of attention last week, Elon musk advocating disc replacement surgery as the cure for his back pain.

As the name suggests, a disc replacement is the process of replacing an injured intervertebral disc (commonly L4/5 or L5/S1) with an artificial one, which sounds like a god send for many, as disc injuries are the most common lower back injury and other replacement surgeries such as hip or knee replacements are generally successful.

Unfortunately, it’s not that simple, the disc injury is only a symptom of the overall problem, movement dysfunction.

Now in some instances, surgery is needed as pain levels and disability are just too high to realistically incorporate movement and lifestyle changes to address the underlying movement dysfunction, but I always wonder what celebrities / prominent figures do to address their issue before deciding on surgery.

He claims this injury first occurred in 2013, I’m curious what has been doing in all that time between then and now? I’d safely wager traditional therapy (such as massage, cupping and joint manipulations) or even interventional procedures (such as epidurals, rhizolysis and nerve blocks) which are all focused on modifying symptoms, not addressing the way he moves throughout the day and modifying daily habits to retrain his nervous system to the discs the best environment to heal.

I’d also safely wager that he’ll still have episodes of back pain unless his daily movements and habits are addressed, one can hope!

Now he has an artificial disc that cannot repair unlike a biological disc, it can only wear, eventually needing a fusion. 🤷


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