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So here is the low down on low back disc bulge or herniation

First things first: what is a disc? Perhaps this might seem like an elementary question, but just in case, I’d like to make sure that we are clear as to what that structure actually is and where it is located.

Discs are located between each vertebra and are extremely important in acting as shock absorbers or big cushions that help allow the spine to maintain normal, healthy movement. The disc itself has a very thick gel like substance in the middle called the nucleus pulposus. This nucleus is kept in it’s proper position and placement by layer after layer of very strong fibrous rings that have an alternating directional pattern; these are called the annular fibers.

Typically, due to some sort of mechanical insult, either sudden onset type macro traumas or overuse cumulative type micro traumas, these annular fibers may weaken and therefore allow some of that thick gel to start working it’s way out of that ring, creating a bulging effect, hence the term bulging disc. When all layers of the annular fibers tear or “rupture” and that thick gel is then able to leak out, kind of like jelly coming out of a doughnut, this is called a disc herniation or ruptured disc.

The understanding of a low back disc bulge or disc herniation can sometimes be a little confusing. One reason that it can be confusing is that you may have one of these conditions and not even know it, or you may be in the most severe pain you have ever experienced or anything in between.

The most common place for a disc bulge or disc herniation to occur is in the lower back. When either of these happen, this can put pressure on the spinal cord or on the nerve roots and cause the following types of pain or symptoms:

  • Sharp buttock or leg pain
  • Burning muscle pain
  • Muscle weakness
  • Foot numbness
  • Tingling or pins and needles
  • Shooting electric like pain

Now, it is possible to experience some of these symptoms without actually having one of these disc conditions just yet. I know, just adding to the confusion. In either case, you most definitely want to have it checked out and properly diagnosed. Regular old x-rays will not confirm or rule out that there is one of these disc conditions. An MRI is the only definitive way to accurately diagnose either a disc bulge or a disc herniation and specifically to what degree or severity the condition has progressed.

The good news is that we can help!

There is a very large percentage of people with a disc bulge or disc herniation that can successfully avoid invasive procedures like injections or surgery. My practice deals with herniated disc treatments and bulging disc treatments every day and have helped thousands of people just like you eliminate their pain and return to normal lifestyles.

One of the things I feel is most important in our strategy building approach for solving your issue is education. The more you understand the details of your condition and all of the chiropractic treatment options available, the better chance we will have at successfully resolving your pain.

Call or contact us online to schedule your Pain Elimination Strategy Session.

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