If you or a loved one is suffering from torn disc symptoms, you are aware of how painful it can be. A torn disc is also referred to as a ruptured or herniated disc. The condition occurs when the inner material of an intervertebral disc leaks out of a torn or cracked section of the outer wall. The condition may cause pain if the disc material impinges upon the spinal cord or nerve roots.
A torn disc in the cervical (neck) region of the spine may manifest pain at the point of impingement, as well as radiating pain, muscle spasms, cramping, weakness, numbness, and tingling in the neck, shoulder, arms, and hand. An occurrence in the lumbar (lower back) region of the spine may cause the symptoms to exhibit in the lower back, buttocks, thighs, calves, and feet.
Although a torn disc may develop for a number of reasons, the primary cause is age, which of course cannot be prevented. Intervertebral discs undergo a progressive degeneration over time, known as degenerative disc disease. As we age, the discs of cartilage between our vertebrae that are normally spongy and flexible begin to dehydrate and become weak. The tough outer wall of the disc, called the annulus fibrosus, breaks down. Pressure exerted from the vertebrae above and below may cause the inner gel-like substance called the nucleus pulposus to expand outward. A bulging disc occurs when this inner material pushes against the outer wall, creating a bulge in the spinal canal. If the annulus fibrosus is weak enough to crack or tear, and the nucleus pulposus leaks out into the spinal cavity, the resulting condition is known as a torn disc.
Easing Your Pain
If a torn disc is causing you lasting pain and discomfort and the various treatments you tried are not providing you with relief, contact us to learn more about the advanced endoscopic techniques used at Laser Spine Institute.