What is a herniated disc?
A herniated disc refers to a problem with one of the discs that sit between the individual vertebrae that stack to make up your spine. The spinal disc is soft and jelly-like and encased inside of a harder rubber-like exterior. Specifically, a herniated disc is a condition where the inside of the disc is forced out through the exterior layer and may irritate a nearby nerve.
Depending on the location of the herniated disc, it can cause serious pain or numbness in your arm or leg. At Boev Clinic our highly trained spine doctors are experienced in treating herniated discs. Our clinic uses the most advanced technology to provide the highest quality of care. Call our clinic at (585) 342-2638 to schedule an appointment.
What Are the Symptoms?
Although most people with herniated discs experience pain in their lower back, the pain can also occur in your neck, arms, and legs. Signs and symptoms typically depend on where the herniated disc is positioned and whether or not the disc is pressing against a nerve.
Here are some of the most common symptoms of herniated discs:
- Arm Pain or Leg Pain– If your herniated disk is in your lower back, you’ll typically feel the most pain in your buttocks, thigh and calf. This pain might shoot into your arm or leg when you cough, sneeze or move into certain positions.
- Numbness or Tingling Feeling-People with a herniated disc often experience numbness or tingling to the part of the body affected by the spinal nerves.
- Muscle Weakness– Muscles can also be affected from a disc pressing against a nerve. Some people experience difficulty when holding or lifting items or stumbling when they walk.
There are even instances where you may have a herniated disc and not show any symptoms. In this case, you probably wouldn’t know you have it unless you get a spinal image taken. This is why it’s important to have regular appointments with Boev Clinic to discuss your spine health and any pain you may be experiencing.
What Causes a Herniated Disc?
Herniated discs are most often caused by a normal aging wear-and-tear condition called disc degeneration. As you age, this disc becomes less flexible and more likely to rupture or tear with minor strains.
Because of this, many people can’t identify the exact cause of their herniated disk-sometimes, it’s as simple as using your back muscles to move a heavy object rather than your legs. Other times, a traumatic event may be the cause such as falling on your back.
What Risk Factors Can Lead to a Herniated Disc?
Here are the factors that can lead to a herniated disc:
- Occupation– People with physically demanding jobs where they lift and move heavy objects are also at a greater risk of having a herniated disc.
- Weight– Excess body weight causes stress on the discs in your spine.
Genetics– If you have a family history of herniated discs, you may be more likely to get one due to a genetic predisposition.
Smoking– Doctors believe that smoking lessens the oxygen supply to the disc, causing it to deteriorate more quickly.
How Do You Treat Herniated Discs?
- Take part in activities prescribed by a physical therapist to build stronger muscles that support your back.
- Incorporate massage, cold and heat treatment, stretching, aerobic exercises, ultrasound therapy, and electrical muscle stimulation.
Consider getting steroid injections around the spinal nerve via an epidural if other approaches don’t work to minimize pain and swelling.
Usually, surgery is not the first choice.
- If symptoms develop or if discomfort doesn’t get better with alternative therapies, think about having surgery.
- Spinal fusion, lumbar laminotomy, discectomy, microdiscectomy, and artificial disk surgery are among the surgical alternatives.
- The goals of every operation are to reduce pain, stabilize the spine, and release pressure on nerves.
Schedule Your Appointment for Herniated Disc Treatment Today!
If you are looking for relief from your herniated disc pain near the Rochester area, please contact Boev Clinic today at (585) 342-2638.