Herniated Disk Treatment Near Me: A herniated disk is when a piece of the spinal cord’s cushion protrudes into a space it shouldn’t, often causing leg, arm or back pain, numbness, and sometimes muscle weakness. This cushion acts like a shock absorber between the bones of the spine (vertebrae) and has a softer center (nucleus) then the outer rim (annulus). They are located in-between every spinal bone including the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spine. The disk is more like cartilage than bone or muscle and does not have much nerve or blood supply.

herniated disk treatment near me

Herniated Disk Symptoms

The location of the herniation dictates the symptoms and severity, many herniations don’t cause any problems and require no treatment. If the herniation presses on an exiting nerve or the spinal cord itself, that almost always causes pain among other symptoms like numbness and weakness. These are the main symptoms of a herniated disk:

  • Back Pain ( usually intense and dull)
  • Leg or Arm Pain(Shooting or burning)
  • Buttock Pain
  • Leg or Arm Numbness
  • Leg or Arm Weakness
  • Muscle Mass Loss, or Atrophy
  • Loss of Bowel or Bladder Control
  • Pelvic Numbness

The cause of a herniated disk is often age related degeneration where the disk starts to break down or develop a tear which allows the softer inside to escape outwards from the center. It can herniated in any direction, front, back or sideways. As we age, the disk loses water content and becomes more fragile and susceptible to tears, damage and herniations. Because of the water content in a child’s spine, it’s rare to see a herniated disks in children. Injury to the back, usually by falling, jumping, or carrying heavy weight can acutely herniate a disk.

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Herniated Disk Treatment Near Me

When Should I see a Doctor?

There are some “Red Flag” signs that should prompt you to see a doctor regarding your back pain quickly: pelvic area numbness, back pain associated with a fever, loss of bowel or bladder control, and or severe pain that is not amenable to to over the counter remedies. The physician will take a history, examine your back, and often order imaging studies like an X-Ray and or MRI.

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The treatment of a herniated disk should include bed rest for no more than 48 hours as prolonged bed rest and inactivity has been shown to make things worse, non-steroidal anti-inflammatories like Ibuprofen, Tylenol, and avoid quick movements and heavy lifting as initial treatments. Sometimes the Family Doctor will order physical therapy and or a steroid injection into the area of herniation. These treatments do not heal a herniated disk, but allow it to become less painful in many cases. The protruding disk can sometimes be reabsorbed by the body, resolving the symptoms significantly or completely.

herniated disk

A small percentage of patients will require surgery which is often recommended when conservative measures fail or there are ‘Red Flag” signs at the time of presentation or thereafter. The most frequently performed surgery is called a microdiscectomy where the surgeon only removes the portion of the disk that is pressing on vital tissue like the exiting nerve or spinal canal. This is often done as an outpatient where patients go home the same day and recover with pain medication and physical rehabilitation. Surgery is not always a long term solution as 20% can re-herniate over one’s lifetime.

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