Slipped disc treatment methods — nonsurgical and surgical options

To the relief of many patients, slipped disc treatment does not always entail surgery. In fact, only a small percentage of patients who are diagnosed with slipped discs will require surgery, as most patients find the relief they need from nonsurgical options. If you have been diagnosed with a slipped disc, it’s important that you consult with your physician before starting any treatment plan. He or she can determine the best treatment regimen for your spine care needs. To learn more about a slipped disc and the treatments available to relieve your condition, read the following article.

Slipped discs explained

A slipped disc is just a term for a herniated or ruptured disc. This condition occurs when the gel-like center of a spinal disc seeps through a tear in the disc’s tough outer layer. Its most common cause is the natural aging process and the accompanying breakdown of spinal anatomy, but the condition can also occur as a result of trauma, like a car accident or a sports injury. Symptoms can include sharp localized pain as well as numbness, tingling or muscle weakness in the upper or lower body.

Nonsurgical slipped disc treatments

Treatment for a slipped disc almost always begins with nonsurgical methods, such as:

  • Physical therapy to strengthen and stretch the muscles, tendons and ligaments that support the neck and back
  • Lifestyle changes to improve spinal health, like losing weight, becoming more physically active, reducing alcohol consumption and quitting smoking
  • Over-the-counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to reduce pain and inflammation
  • Hot and cold therapy to relax tense muscles and relieve inflammation

If nonsurgical treatment fails to relieve your symptoms after several weeks or months, you might be advised to undergo surgical treatment for a slipped disc.

Surgical slipped disc treatments

There are two types of surgical procedures available for a slipped disc — traditional open spine surgery and minimally invasive spine surgery. Instead of requiring large incisions, a two- to five-day hospital stay and a lengthy rehabilitation, which is the case with open spine surgery, the minimally invasive procedures offered at Laser Spine Institute use a small incision and are performed on an outpatient basis. This results in a shorter recovery period compared to traditional open spine surgery.^

Our minimally invasive decompression and stabilization procedures are a safer and effective alternative to traditional open spine surgery as well as a clinically appropriate alternative.^ These procedures use muscle-sparing techniques, allowing many patients to be up and walking within a few hours of surgery.^ If nonsurgical treatments have provided you with little to no relief and your physician has recommended surgical treatment for a slipped disc, contact Laser Spine Institute.

As the leader in minimally invasive spine surgery, we have already helped more than 75,000 patients find relief from their debilitating neck and back conditions. Reach out to our dedicated team and ask for a free MRI review* to find out if you’re a potential candidate for the slipped disc procedures performed at our state-of-the-art facilities. We can help you get your life back from your chronic pain and discomfort.