Degenerative bulging disc is a term used to describe an intervertebral disc that has weakened due to age-related deterioration, causing the disc to bulge outward from its normal position.
Degenerative bulging discs sometimes result in degenerative disc disease a malady common in aging. As people age, the wear and tear from a lifetime of physical activity causes various body parts to deteriorate. Deterioration threatens the integrity of intervertebral discs. How does this happen? Intervertebral discs are made from a connective tissue containing water. With age this connective tissue desiccates and loses its elasticity and strength. Daily activity causes minor trauma. This flattens intervertebral discs. As a consequence of lost elasticity, discs do not return to their native shape. Further, the disc’s core material pushes outward stretching the rim of the disc. Eventually, a bulging disc is created. This process remains undetected unless a bulging portion of disc impinges upon a surrounding nerve. When these bulges push on nerve roots or the spinal cord, pain and other symptoms, including numbness and tingling, can result.
Treatments that may alleviate the symptoms associated with a degenerative bulging disc include:
- Getting regular, low-impact aerobic exercise in the form of walking or swimming. These activities increase endurance and build core strength, assisting discs to bear the body’s weight. Activity also increases blood, nutrients, and oxygen flowing to intervertebral discs
- Stretching to maximize flexibility
- Performing specific bulging disc exercises to strengthen back and abdominal muscles
- Practicing proper body mechanics when performing any task
- Practicing good posture while walking, standing, or sitting at the computer
- Participating in bulging disc physical therapy sessions with a licensed therapist
However, if you develop a degenerative bulging disc that is pressing on spinal nerves and causing severe pain, more aggressive medical intervention, such as spinal injections or surgery, may be required. If bulging disc surgery has been recommended by your physician, please contact Laser Spine Institute (LSI) about our minimally invasive endoscopic procedures. Our procedures have helped thousands of people around the world with degenerative bulging disc disease. Studies have shown that our techniques are safe and effective. Contact Laser Spine Institute today for an evaluation of your condition. We will complimentary review your MRI or CT scan.