A herniated disc results in a problem with one of the rubbery cushions (discs) between the individual bones (vertebrae) that stack up to make your spine. The discs are comprised of a hard outer ring and a soft inner ring. The spinal disc in a young individual is soft and elastic. It becomes more rigid with age and becomes more vulnerable to injury.

When spinal discs are damaged by injury, disease, or the normal wear and tear associated with aging, they may bulge out of place (herniate) or break open (rupture). A herniated disc alone may not cause discomfort. Pain occurs when pressure is put on the nerve roots or spinal cord. Depending on the location of the herniated disc, symptoms will occur in the area of the body affected by the nerve.

Some common and serious symptoms may include:

  • Pain
  • Numbness
  • Weakness
  • Numbness and tingling (“pins and needles” sensation)
  • Weakness of functional hand movements.
  • Pain that is severe or that has become dramatically worse
  • Progressive weakness in a leg or foot
  • Difficulty walking, standing, or moving
  • Numbness in the genital or rectal area
  • Loss of bowel or bladder control
  • Difficulty with urination

Disc herniation can often be resolved successfully without surgery. Through the combination of treatments such as physiotherapy, osteopathic manipulation, and proper diet and exercise, symptoms may be improved. Alternatively, anti-inflammatory medications such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or spinal injections often provide adequate relief of immediate pain and discomfort.

On occasions, surgery may be recommended if conservative treatment options do not provide sufficient relief. If this is the case, minimally invasive surgery may be performed to remove the herniated disc and free up space around the compressed nerve. Burak Ozgur, MD is dedicated to providing minimally invasive, compassionate, and the most professional care possible to ensure a healthy, happy recovery.

For more information on herniated disc or to schedule an appointment, please don’t hesitate to contact us today at (949) 383-4190 or toll free 888-64-SPINE.