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Herniated Disc – What Is It?

The complaints of leg pain, back pain, or even weakness of the lower extremities are a very common complaint with most people. The most common diagnosis is a herniated disc or rupture of the spinal disc. The Discs serves as cushions in between the vertebrae. When herniated disc occurs, the disc is pushed out from its normal position, and then protrudes through its outer covering, which will then result in the main herniated disc symptom. It would not have been such a problem if not for the spinal nerves that stay too close towards the intervertebral disc edge. 


The intervertebral edge becomes rigid as the person ages.  For young people it is not so much of an issue- the disc is elastically soft, so are other body structures such as ligaments and tendons.  As the biological age increases in number, the disc will eventually lose its elasticity and will be more vulnerable to injuries.  In fact, there are already younger people like 30 years old whose MRI or magnetic resonance imaging results showed disc deterioration. This is a worrying fact, and further reason why effective herniated disc treatment is required.


As the herniated disc sticks out in between vertebrae, both the spinal cord and nerves may pinch together.  There is only very limited space in between these two.  If most of the herniated disc extrudes, then the nerves and cord will be compressed and trapped. This is a herniated disc.


Herniated disc can happen after a sudden fall or accident, and may occur with the lumbar spine repeatedly strained. It is often common with people work in offices with little exercise or mobility  People who suffer from a herniated disc may also suffer from existing conditions such as spinal stenosis. Stenosis is another medical condition that cause tissue inflammations and bone spurs.


Leg pains, muscle weakness, parasthesias, and loss control over bowel and or bladder characterize symptoms of a herniated disc.  The leg pain is mostly felt around the thigh area, leg or either foot.  Parasthesias, is a medical word that means numbness and tingling sensations.


Meanwhile, muscle weakness is a result of some nerve irritations, which in the case of a herniated disc usually happens around the ankle area.  A simple test is doing some reflexes on the ankle and knee to check for nerve irritations.  While signs of loss of control over the bowel and bladder can be indications of cauda equina, possible results may also be due to a herniated disc.  Be aware that this symptom is a medical emergency that needs to be properly taken cared of by health professionals and not a condition to be treated lightly. 


There are many different types of a herniated disc, some of the most common include: herniated cervical disc (most commonly in c5-6 disc area), bulging neck disc, and a herniated thoracic disc.


Most physicians come out with the diagnosis of herniated disc after some thorough physical examinations.  He or she will do some tests such as muscle strength, checking on reflexes and sensations before final diagnosis is established.  An MRI or the magnetic resonance imaging also aids in detecting herniated disc. 


Diagnosis and treatments all vary depending on the symptoms provided, the patient’s condition and MRI and X-ray results. Once all these essential factors are put together, only then that doctors plan on a suitable treatment. Herniated disc surgery is normally reserved as a last resort when all other treatmetnts have failed. Further to standard treatments of a herniated disc and sciatica pain, (I reccomend you look at treat sciatica now)  sciatica homeopathy has also been proven to assist in treating a herniated disc. Treatments and rehabilitations of a herniated disc are relatively simple, and in most cases easy to implement.

For further information the NHS has some very interesting information on slipped discs.

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