Herniated discs can cause symptoms that vary from dull aches to extreme nerve pain, like sciatica. At Melbourne Spine, Omar H. Henriquez, MD, works with men and women in Melbourne, Florida, to manage the pain and discomfort associated with herniated discs. To learn more about safe and effective pain management techniques at Melbourne Spine, call or schedule an appointment online today.
There are 24 vertebrae in your spine separated by rubbery discs that provide flexibility and shock absorption. When one of these discs becomes damaged, it can break open or bulge, leading to a condition known as a ruptured, slipped, or herniated disc.
You can have a herniated disc anywhere in your spine, but they usually appear in the lower back, or lumbar spine, and your neck, or cervical spine.
Herniated discs are usually the result of injury or aging. Over time, your discs begin to wear out and lose their flexibility. These changes leave them susceptible to damage and injury. Injury can occur in a variety of ways, including physical actions like twisting and bending.
When the outer layer of your disk cracks, the jelly-like center can bulge or leak out. This material puts pressure on surrounding nerves and causes uncomfortable symptoms to develop.
Not all herniated discs cause symptoms. In some cases, you may only have a mild backache. When your nerve roots become involved, however, they can trigger weakness, numbness, and pain along the affected nerve.
Herniated discs in your lumbar spine typically cause sciatica pain that radiates through your leg and into your foot. It’s also common to have weakness or numbness in your leg muscles. When you have a herniated disc in your neck, you usually experience numbness, weakness, and pain in your upper arms, shoulders, fingers, and hands.
Specific movements like sneezing and coughing often worsen herniated disc pain.
Dr. Henriquez conducts a comprehensive physical exam and reviews your symptoms to determine if a herniated disc is causing your pain. In some cases, he might also suggest digital imaging tests to rule out other potential conditions.
If you have herniated disc symptoms that don’t improve within a month,Dr. Henriquez often tries a combination of treatments, including:
Dr. Henriquez also offers innovative therapies like transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) or radiofrequency ablations. These pain management treatments use small electrical currents to provide pain relief.
For more information on managing herniated disc pain, call Melbourne Spine or schedule an appointment online today.