This exhibit depicts the superior anatomy of a cervical vertebra with a central degenerative disc herniation. Degenerative disc disease is the process of intervertebral disc degradation as a result of age or injury. Over time, the disc dehydrates causing the annulus to crack or tear. The nucleus can then herniate through portions of the damaged annulus and encroach upon the spine’s neurological structures. This can lead to chronic pain and numbness. In this image, a central disc herniation is seen impinging upon the spinal cord.