While I have no disk problems, my back gives me a lot of pain. The problem is is a variety of arthritis called ankylosing spondylitis. The spine is slowly fusing, arthritis deposits bridging around the disks. Several of my lumbar vertebrae have already fused and just this summer I am beginning to suffer some neuropathy in my feet - no pain, just the feeling of cold wet socks that ain't so. The doc did nerve tests of my feet and legs to rule out diabetic or ordinary neuropathy. They all worked fine but the signal is being impeded at the spine.
I have lost considerable range of motion in my back and neck. The arthritis also affects my ribs and sternum limiting chest expansion and breathing so I "belly breathe".
I am beginning to stoop over and if if I live long enough the spine will fuse from top to bottom into a condition called "bamboo spine". I can still lift pretty well, but I have to avoid falls and hard bumps that could "fracture" these frozen joints. Indeed, when I first lay down in bed, a joint that has had all day to try and fuse will "let loose" with the brief but excruciating pain of a broken bone. After that
I sleep well enough until a general ache forces me to get up 6 or 7 hours later.
There is nothing aside from pain relievers to do for the condition but adapt and move on.
Weston Bye - Practitioner of the Electromechanical Arts - Author of The Mechatronist Column, Digital Machinist magazine