The human body has 23 spinal discs located between each of the bony spinal vertebrae. They play the role of shock absorbers holding the spinal vertebrae together while allowing some amount of spinal mobility.
The spinal disc has a very interesting structure which is very similar to a jelly doughnut. It has a soft jelly-like center encased by a tough exterior portion. Occasionally this‘jelly” is pushed out through a crack in the tough exertior. This condition is known as a slipped disc, ruptured disc, or a herniated disc.
The slipped disc may press upon spinal nerves causing pain in their area of distribution or in some cases they may cause no symptoms at all.
You could have a slipped disc if you experience the following symptoms:
- Back pain that radiates into your leg or arm along one side of the body
- Numbness and tingling in the area supplied by the affected nerve
- Weakness of the muscles supplied by the affected nerve
Most people won’t be able to pinpoint an exact cause for their slipped disk as it is often a slow, age related wear-and-tear problem.
A slipped disc should get better within a few weeks after a short period of rest, pain medications, and physical therapy. However, if you notice worsening back pain symptoms, loss of bowel or bladder control, or develop loss of sensation in the groin and inner thigh region (saddle anesthesia),you might require surgical treatment.
Visit the Spine Specialists at the Newport Care Medical Group for an assessment of back pain and a personalized treatment recommendation.
NewportCare Medical Group is a comprehensive specialty group located in Newport Beach, California specializing in advanced non-surgical and surgical treatments for a wide range of orthopedic conditions.