Common signs of a torn disc

If you suspect that you may have a torn spinal disc, the best course of action is to visit a doctor. Only a medical professional can accurately diagnose your condition and suggest an appropriate treatment plan. With this in mind, there are certain symptoms that are commonly associated with spine injuries and may point toward a torn disc.

A torn disc develops when excess strain from degenerative conditions, traumatic injuries or years of wear and tear causes a crack to develop in the disc’s tough outer shell. This can cause its inner contents to seep into the spinal canal. Torn discs aren’t always symptomatic — some people with this condition never experience noticeable discomfort. However, if the injured disc presses against a nearby component of the spine or causes the vertebrae to shift, a number of symptoms may occur. Here are five common signs that you may have a torn disc:

  1. Localized pain in the neck or back
  2. Pain that travels down the arms or legs
  3. Numbness or tingling sensations
  4. Stiffness and reduced mobility
  5. Muscle weakness and reduced coordination

Many patients are able to effectively manage their symptoms with conservative treatments like physical therapy and medications that relieve pain and inflammation. Others may benefit from alternative therapies like acupuncture, yoga and chiropractic care. Less frequently, surgery may be necessary to stabilize the spine or relieve compression on a nerve root or the spinal cord. If your torn disc symptoms do not respond to conservative or alternative treatments, consider receiving a free MRI review* at Laser Spine Institute to learn if you are a candidate for our minimally invasive procedures.

Contact Laser Spine Institute to learn about our approach to torn disc treatment and how our board-certified surgeons+ can help you Stand Tall.®