The symptoms associated with a herniated disc in the neck

Neck pain is just one of the many possible symptoms of a herniated disc in the neck. Depending on the specific nerve affected by this degenerative disc disease, a wide variety of symptoms can be experienced, some as far away as the fingertips.

Because the symptoms of a herniated disc can sometimes be experienced in seemingly unrelated parts of the body, diagnosing the presence of this degenerative disc disease can be difficult. This is why, if you experience prolonged, pain-related symptoms that don’t seem to respond to at-home treatments, it is important that you visit your physician. Your physician can help you determine the cause of your symptoms and the best treatment options to find pain relief.

Explaining a herniated disc

A herniated disc in your neck occurs when the inner disc material seeps through a tear in the outer wall of the disc and leaks into the spinal canal.

While the actual rupturing of the disc is not usually symptomatic on its own, when the herniated disc material comes into contact with the spinal cord or one of the nerve root pairs in the spinal canal, a number of symptoms can develop. This is because these nerves often send signals to muscles or muscle groups throughout the shoulders, arms, hands and fingers, and when the regular function of the nerve is interfered with, the muscles connected to the nerve pathway by the nerve can be affected.

For example, a pinched nerve in the bottom of the cervical spine (neck) near the shoulder blade may result in pain, numbness and/or weakness that extends from the neck, through the shoulder and arm, and into the fingers.

Other symptoms commonly associated with a herniated disc in the neck include:

  • Neck stiffness or soreness
  • Headaches
  • Muscle weakness in the arms or shoulders
  • Diminished reflexes
  • Numbness, tingling or a burning sensation

Treatment options for a herniated disc in the neck

Treatment for a herniated disc in the neck often depends on the location and cause of the degenerative disc disease, although a combination of conservative, noninvasive methods usually offer effective pain relief.

If you continue to experience chronic neck pain after several months of treatment, contact Laser Spine Institute to learn how one of our minimally invasive, outpatient procedures may be able to help you find relief from neck pain. We offer several types of minimally invasive procedures used to treat the most common spine conditions, including a cervical herniated disc. Because our surgery is minimally invasive and does not disrupt the surrounding muscles, our patients experience a shorter recovery time^ and a higher patient satisfaction rate (96) than patients who choose to undergo traditional open neck surgery.

For more information about the advantages of the minimally invasive spine surgery at Laser Spine Institute, contact our spine care experts today.

Browse Related Resources