Specialist reveals new technique to treat disc problems

Dr Walid Al-Hajji

KUWAIT: Interventional radiologist, spinal column and chronic pain consultant Dr Walid Al-Hajji spoke about a new technique to treat backbone disc problems. The treatment uses needles and advanced and accurate tools to resize the disc and make it smaller to allow the patient avoid major surgeries, he explained, adding that the success rate of these treatments is around 80 percent in most patients, along with exercising and reducing weight. He said modern medicine aims to reduce surgeries and this is the job of international radiology.

Hajji said the percentage of disc cases is high in the Gulf region in general and Kuwait in particular – up to 70 percent in the elderly, while it also affects younger people due to obesity, along with athletes who are involved in sports such as weightlifting without strengthening the back muscles. He said young men who do not pay attention to strengthening their muscles before being involved in weightlifting are prone to cartilage slips more than others. He advised young people to strengthen their muscles before starting to lift weights.

Hajji said the elderly suffer from disc cases because of advanced age and weakened back muscles. He said most of those who suffer from disc disorders also suffer from sciatica, and its symptoms include pain that radiates to the legs, numbness in the feet, and muscle cramps in legs that increase with standing or sitting for long periods and sometimes with walking if the patient is overweight.

Hajji said the percentage of women with disc cases increases after the age of 50 due to the danger of osteoporosis and may reach a prevalence of 80 percent, while youngsters are less prone to suffer from disc conditions. Hajji warned against laziness, lack of exercise and being overweight, because these are the main causers of disc conditions.

By Abdellatif Sharaa

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