Spondylosis is osteoarthritis of the spine. It is a degenerative disease affecting the facet joints and the intervertebral discs. It is most common in people over 60, but deterioration may begin at any age. People with spondylosis may suffer from back pain and/or stiffness, usually in the lower back or the neck. Advanced cases may result in spinal stenosis. Complications include pressure on blood vessels causing dizziness or headaches and pressure on the spinal cord which may result in a weakening of body function including loss of bladder and bowel function. Spondylosis should not be confused with spondylolysis which is a type of vertebral fracture.
Caution must be taken with regard to massage for anyone diagnosed with spondylosis. Surrounding muscles may be protectively splinting and should not be interfered with. Massage should not be administered to anyone who is experiencing acute inflammation resulting from spondylosis.