BULGING DISC

BACK AND NECK PAIN RELIEF

WHAT IS A BULGING DISC AND WHAT CAUSES IT?

A bulging disc is a spinal disc that projects out of its normal space. Bulging intervertebral discs may cause distress and incapacity in parts of the body if the disc interferes with a nerve root.

A bulging disc occurs when there is weakness in the fibrous material (annulus fibrosus) that encompases the soft central portion (nucleus pulposus). This fibrous material weakens naturally as a person ages. Other things that can contribute to a bulging disc include repetitive movements, strenuous lifting, twisting of the body, bone spurs (osteophytes) pushing against the disc, and many other degenerative conditions.

WHAT CAN I DO TO HELP PREVENT A BULGING DISC?

A person can reduce their susceptibility to disc tearing by refraining from smoking, exercising, maintaining good posture, and preserving a healthy body weight.

IF I HAVE A BULGING DISC, WHAT SYMPTOMS MIGHT I NOTICE?

A bulging disc can happen at any spinal segment. If it happens in the lower back, the damaged disc may cause pain to travel to the hips, buttocks, legs, and feet. In the neck, it can cause pain, numbness, decreased strength and sensation, and tingling in the shoulders, arms, hands, and fingers. The symptoms can vary widely based on the patient’s unique case.

WHEN SHOULD I CONSULT WITH A DOCTOR?

A doctor should be consulted when the pain is affecting your quality of life.

HOW CAN A PHYSICIAN DETERMINE IF I HAVE A BULGING DISC?

A bulging disc diagnosis can be suspected when a physician evaluates symptoms and performs a physical examination. This diagnosis is then confirmed with a MRI or CT scan.

HOW IS A BULGING DISC TREATED?

Treatment will vary based on your specific case. The majority of bulging discs are treated without a surgical procedure. Many people can get symptomatic relief by lifting correctly, maintaining a normal body weight, and exercising regularly. If symptoms still persist, epidural steroid injections and/or physical therapy may be recommended. When this still isn’t enough, a minimally invasive surgical procedure may be recommended.

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