Corresponding Author

Aggarwal, Abhishek

Subject Area


Document Type

Clinical Study


Background Data: Evidently, there is an alarmingly increasing incidence of degenerative lumbar spine disease in adolescents and young adults. Hence, it is imperative to ascertain and identify the risk factors so that early lifestyle modifications can be done, and early lumbar spine degeneration can be prevented. Purpose: To study the array of MRI findings of degenerative lumbar spine disease in young adults and quantitatively evaluate the risk factors. Study Design: A prospective imaging case study.Patients and Methods: A total of 200 young adult patients between 21 and 30 years old presenting with low back pain were included in this study. MRI findings of 200 young adults were graded and quantitatively evaluated in relation to three risk factors, that is, physical activity, smoking, and BMI. Grading of intervertebral disc degeneration, lumbar facet joint degeneration, and foraminal stenosis was done.Results: Modic type II endplate changes and reduced T2 bright disc signal were the most common manifestations of spondylosis and intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration, respectively. A correlation between obesity and increasing grades of disc degeneration was found to be most significant at a 95% confidence interval. A significant correlation was found between each of the risk factors (obesity, sedentary lifestyle, and smoking) and increasing grades of IVD degeneration and facet arthropathy with a p value of <0.05. Foraminal stenosis manifested a positive association with BMI at a 95 % confidence interval. Conclusion: This study could recognize a statistically significant correlation between lumbar DDD and physical activity, smoking, and BMI. Identification of causative lifestyle factors could help prevent the occurrence and progression of lumbar DDD. .


MRI, degenerative, lumbar spine, young adults, risk factors