A herniated disc diagnosis (also known as prolapsed disc) can vary depending on the severity and location of the affected disc. While a herniated disc in the lumbar region of the spine (L1-L5) may be the source of lower back pain, a herniated disc in the cervical region (C1-C8) could just as easily be the cause of neck pain and numbness in the fingers. Herniated discs occur when the soft pads of joint cartilage housed between the vertebrae degenerate and extrude into the spinal canal. This applies undue pressure on the spinal cord and spinal nerve roots, which often causes pain and discomfort throughout the body.
With advances in modern science, however, a herniated disc diagnosis is easier to arrive at than ever before. The first step is to visit your local physician who will likely complete:
- A thorough medical background to try and identify the cause of your back or neck pain
- A physical examination to pinpoint the location of the herniated disc
- An MRI or a CT scan to confirm the diagnosis and determine its severity
Once you’ve received your herniated disc diagnosis, you can start to consider treatment options. Often a conservative approach including specialized herniated disc exercises, hot and cold therapy, medication, and epidural steroid injections can alleviate the pain. However, if these treatments do not help you find relief, your doctor may suggest a surgical option to relieve your chronic herniated disc symptoms.
The good news is that the award-winning staff at Laser Spine Institute (LSI) is here to help. Where traditional open-back disc surgery had been the standard treatment in years past, LSI instead offers a variety of revolutionary, minimally invasive, outpatient procedures that have relieved pain for many thousands of people worldwide. Living with a herniated back disc should not be your burden to bear, so contact LSI today for a free review of your MRI and CT scan.