A lumbar ruptured disc – or a ruptured disc in the lower back – is often due to aging and normal wear and tear on the lower back’s vertebrae. These vertebrae can undergo more than one million twisting and turning motions each year, causing your lumbar discs to weaken through the years. In addition to the stress of everyday life, other issues can cause a disc in your lower back to rupture, such as degenerative disc disease or an injury to the spine.
A lumbar ruptured disc – as well as a cervical ruptured disc and thoracic ruptured disc – is more common in people over the age of 30. As the years go by, the jellylike material inside the spinal discs, known as the nucleus pulposus, begins to lose its fluid content, making it less springy and more easily injured. If the disc ruptures, the nucleus pulposus can be forced out through the tear in the disc’s outer layer, or annulus fibrosus. When this happens, pressure can be put on a nerve root or the spinal cord, leading to pain and other symptoms.
Symptoms of a lumbar ruptured disc may include:
- Pain, burning, tingling, or numbness radiating from the buttocks to the hips, legs, and feet
- Weakness in lower back or leg muscles
- Low back pain
- Severe pain when standing, sitting, walking, twisting, or lifting
A lumbar ruptured disc can affect people of any age, but most commonly occurs in persons between 35 to 45 years old.
If you suspect that you’re experiencing signs of a ruptured disc, consult your physician. He or she can determine the cause of your pain and recommend treatments to reduce your discomfort.
There is another option available for pain relief—minimally invasive procedures performed on an outpatient basis at Laser Spine Institute. Our procedures can shrink disc material that is pressing upon your spine, thereby addressing your symptoms at their source. With a quicker recuperation time than other traditional treatments like open back surgery, Laser Spine Institute’s state-of-the-art procedures can help you find meaningful relief from back pain. Contact us today for a free MRI or CT scan review, and to learn more information about our surgeons and facilities.