Small discs made of tissue rest between the vertebrae of your spine. These discs are softer on the center but tough on the edges. If the center of the disc slips through the outer edge, it is referred to as a herniated disc.
WHAT IS A HERNIATED DISC?
HOW DO I KNOW I HAVE A HERNIATED DISC?
Generally, people with herniated discs experience pain in the legs, back and arms. In addition, they might also get numbness and tingling sensation. If you have been taking painkillers or receiving treatment for this discomfort but it doesn’t go away, you should see your Chicago pain management doctor about the possibility of a herniated disc.
WHAT ARE THE COMMON CAUSES OF HERNIATED DISCS?
There are some natural causes of herniated discs. For example, normal wear and tear of the spinal column with aging or because of repetitive motion can cause a herniated disc. In some cases, the disc herniated as the result of an accident or injury, particularly ones where the impact is on the spine.
HOW ARE HERNIATED DISCS DIAGNOSED?
Initially, the Chicago pain doctor will perform a complete medical examination including an assessment of your medical history. If the doctor suspects there is a herniated disc, you may need an MRI to evaluate further. The imaging will typically reveal the location of the disc which has been herniated.
WHAT ARE THE USUAL TREATMENT OPTIONS?
The right course of treatment depends on the doctor’s diagnosis. The doctor will assess the area and extent of the damage as well as the intensity of the pain. Usual treatment options include spinal decompression and a few chiropractic adjustments. In addition, the doctor may recommend you to make some changes to your lifestyle and perform a few corrective exercises on a daily basis as part of your workout routine.
Treatment with pain medications, muscle relaxers and epidural steroid injections are standard for achieving relief and helping patients avoid surgery. Over 95% of patients are able to avoid an operation. Surgery is only considered viable if the above treatments fail to alleviate the pain.