M42.11: Adult osteochondrosis of spine Occipito-atlanto-axial region

You have bone and cartilage that has changed at the junction between your head and your cervical spine.

The spine consists of several sections. The cervical spine begins below the head. The cervical spine is very mobile. Below that is the thoracic spine. The ribs are attached to the thoracic spine. Below the thoracic spine is the lumbar spine. The lumbar spine is also very mobile and it bears a large part of the body’s weight. After the lumbar spine, the sacrum and coccyx join.

The spine is made up of the individual vertebrae. Between every 2 vertebrae there is a vertebral disc. Intervertebral discs consist of cartilage and connective tissue. Intervertebral discs connect neighboring vertebrae to one another and absorb pressure and shocks.

Wear and tear, aging and long-term strain can result in the intervertebral discs and the vertebrae being damaged. Due to the damage, the disks are no longer cushioning the individual vertebrae so well. If the disks are no longer cushioning very well, the vertebrae may come under more pressure than usual. To compensate for the increased pressure, bony projections can form on the top and bottom of the vertebrae. Moreover, with this disorder the connections between the vertebrae and disks may loosen. The vertebrae may then move.

With this disorder, you may not initially have any discomfort. When the changes to the spine increase, they may get back pain. You may also find it more difficult than usual to move your spine.

Additional indicator

On medical documents, the ICD code is often appended by letters that indicate the diagnostic certainty or the affected side of the body.

  • G: Confirmed diagnosis
  • V: Tentative diagnosis
  • Z: Condition after
  • A: Excluded diagnosis
  • L: Left
  • R: Right
  • B: Both sides

Further information


This information is not intended for self-diagnosis and does not replace professional medical advice from a doctor. If you find an ICD code on a personal medical document, please also note the additional indicator used for diagnostic confidence.
Your doctor will assist you with any health-related questions and explain the ICD diagnosis code to you in a direct consultation if necessary.


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