The spine is made up of a number of vertebrae that are stacked on top of
each other. Discs are a type of cushions that provide support and maintain
the space between two vertebrae. These discs allow movement between the
vertebrae and make actions like bending and twisting possible. Herniated
disc is an orthopedic condition that affects these rubbery cushions, causing
them to either dislocate or break open due to strain or injury. It puts
immense pressure on the spinal nerves and lead to pain, discomfort and
numbness. The condition can most commonly be seen in the lower back.
The most common cause of Herniated Disc is age related degeneration. As
people get old, the spinal discs gradually lose the fluid that helps them
to stay flexible. This results in forming cracks and breaks in the outer
most layer of disc. Thus, the thick fluid from inside may flow out through
the cracks and cause the disc to rupture. Herniated Disc can also be a
result of back injury.
Some other causes of herniated disc are:
- Increased pressure or heavy strain on the back
- Sudden twisting movement
- Repetitive activities
- Poor lifting habits
- Prolonged exposure to vibration
- Sports injuries to the back
- Fall or blow to the back
- Excessive weight
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Intense numbness and pain in one side of the body
- Pain usually worsens in the night
- Pain extending to the arms and legs
- Pain in the front part of the thigh
- Pain aggravates after walking a few steps
- Burning or tingling sensation in the affected area
- Weakness in muscles
- Muscle pain and spasms
The treatment options for Herniated Disc may include the following:
Medication: The orthopedic doctor may prescribe medications, nerve pain relievers,
muscle relaxers or injections to provide relief from pain and inflammation.
Sometimes a prescribed course of oral steroids may also be needed to reduce
swelling or soreness.
Physical Therapy: Certain exercises may also help to minimize the pain and discomfort associated
with a Herniated Disc. The physical therapist may also recommend traction,
heat or ice packs, electrical stimulation, ultrasound or temporary bracing
to treat the condition.
Surgery: When conservative treatment approaches do not provide relief from the symptoms,
the orthopedic doctor my recommend the patient to undergo surgery. However
this is required only in severe cases of Herniated Discs.
diagnosis and treatment of a Herniated Disc, visit OrthoTexas in Carrollton, TX. To schedule an appointment, you can
call at (972) 492 – 1334.