Disc protrusion symptoms are widely varied, depending on the specific pathology of the disc disorder. Ranging from chronic back pain to numb fingers, the symptoms of disc protrusion are numerous, yet a protruded disc is not symptomatic itself. In fact, an individual normally becomes aware of a problem only after the disc has protruded into the spinal canal and compressed a nerve root or the spinal cord.
The pliable, shock-absorbent intervertebral discs become protruded when the inner jelly-like substance of the disc pushes against the disc’s outer wall, causing the wall to bulge outward. The disc can bulge straight back toward the spinal cord (central disc protrusion), or it can bulge toward the left or right of the spinal cord (lateral disc protrusion). Either way, the protrusion can press upon the spinal cord itself, or it can impinge on one of the many nerve roots branching off the spinal cord.
The severity, duration, and location of the disc protrusion symptoms depend on the specific disc that has become weakened and the extent of the nerve compression. Some common disc protrusion symptoms include:
- Chronic, local neck or back pain
- Radiating or “traveling” pain
- Sciatica(in cases of a lower back, or lumbar disc protrusion)
- Muscle weakness
- Numbness and tingling in the legs or arms
- The sensation of heat or pins and needles
In some cases, patients may not respond to conservative treatment and surgery is prescribed. It is reasonable to determine the least invasive efficacious surgical treatment possible. Please investigate the minimally invasive procedures performed at Laser Spine Institute, offering efficacious procedures with shorter convalescent period and lower risk when compared with traditional open spine surgery of all types. Contact us today for a complimentary review of your MRI or CT scan, and to receive more information.