What is a herniated disc?
You have a cushioning disc between each of your vertebrae that absorbs shock and helps your spine to twist and bend. Each of those discs has a gel-like interior that’s surrounded by a firm, rubbery shell. A herniated disc occurs when the outer shell tears and the soft interior bulges out.
There’s very little extra space in your spinal column, so the herniated disc has a high chance of compressing a nerve. Nerve compression causes localized pain as well as radiating pain, numbness, and weakness.
What causes a herniated disc?
In most cases, herniated discs are due to wear and tear. As you age, your spinal discs become dry, less flexible, and more vulnerable to injury. For example, if your spinal discs are already weak, and you lift something heavy or suddenly twist your spine, one of your discs could tear and become herniated.
Other factors that contribute to your risk of developing herniated discs include your weight, your career, and your genetics.
For example, if you have a physically demanding job, you may stress your spinal discs more than someone who has a more sedentary career. Additionally, carrying extra weight can stress your spine and increase your risk of injury.
How is a herniated disc diagnosed?
The team at Source Healthcare uses comprehensive exams and diagnostic testing to diagnose herniated discs and other causes of back pain. They often use radiologic imaging, including X-rays and MRIs as well as nerve conduction studies, to confirm their diagnosis and pinpoint the location of your herniated disc.
How is a herniated disc treated?
The team at Source Healthcare provides state-of-the-art, customized treatment plans for herniated discs. While your treatment plan is created to address your specific needs, it may include:
- Stem cell therapy
- Platelet-rich plasma (PRP)
- Anti-inflammatory medicine
- Physical therapy
- Epidural injections
- Nerve root blocks
- Percutaneous discectomy
- Ozone therapy
Source Healthcare actively participates in clinical research to stay at the cutting edge of emerging medical treatments and technologies. They’re particularly interested in finding new ways to implement regenerative medicine treatments, including stem cells and PRP.
Call Source Healthcare or schedule an appointment online today if you have back pain and want attentive, expert care.