Degenerative disc disease in the lumbar spine, or lower back, refers to a syndrome in which a compromised disc causes low back pain.
Although there is a slight genetic component to individuals who suffer from DDD, the true cause is probably multifactorial. It could be from simple wear and tear, or may have a traumatic cause. However, it rarely starts from a major trauma such as a car accident. It is most likely due to a low energy injury to the disc that progresses with time.