Ruptured disc recovery — what’s involved and how long does it take?

How long a ruptured disc recovery takes and what to expect during the recovery period is determined by several factors, including the location and severity of the damaged disc and the overall health of the patient. For example, if you are an athlete or are used to several good workouts a week, your body may have an easier time recovering from ruptured disc surgery than a patient who is older or who is not as active.

Prior to surgery, your surgical team will review with you what to expect after your specific surgery and the postoperative guidelines tailored to your health and lifestyle. It is important that you follow these guidelines daily to help ensure a safe and timely recovery after your surgery.

What are the symptoms of ruptured discs and why does a patient experience them?

A ruptured disc, which is more commonly referred to as a herniated disc, occurs when a disc in the spine develops a tear in the elastic outer layer, allowing the nucleus of the disc, which is a gel-like fluid, to leak out of the tear and into the spinal canal.

When the extruded disc material comes into contact with the spinal cord, a spinal nerve or a spinal nerve root, the following symptoms can occur:

  • Pain
  • Numbness
  • Muscle weakness
  • Tingling
  • Warm or burning sensation

These symptoms can present themselves at the site of the pinched nerve and/or along the nerve pathway into the closest arm or leg.

How are ruptured discs treated?

While the first approach to ruptured disc treatment is typically a nonsurgical, conservative method, like physical therapy or pain medication, surgery can also be used.

At Laser Spine Institute, we offer minimally invasive spine surgery to treat a ruptured disc. Our decompression surgery treats this condition by removing a small piece of the damaged disc that is pressing against the nerve root and causing your pain. If the ruptured disc is so damaged that it can no longer appropriately support the spine, a stabilization procedure will be performed to remove the disc and replace it with an artificial one. Both types of procedures are performed through a small incision with no muscle disruption, offering patients a safer, more effective alternative to traditional open back surgery.

Laser Spine Institute

To learn more about the advantages of our minimally invasive spine surgery to treat a ruptured disc, contact Laser Spine Institute today and request a review of your MRI report or CT scan.

If you have already undergone one of our minimally invasive procedures for a ruptured disc and you have questions about your recovery, please call our 24-hour SPINE LINE for medical assistance.