NSW Medical Bulletin

Australia's Advance Medical Technology

Signs and Symptoms of a Slipped Disc


You might have slipped a disc in your backbone if you find yourself feeling serious pain in your back once you have done some heavy lifting, or after you have exercised. The spinal column is made up of 26 vertebrae, and these vertebrae are cushioned by disks. The objective of these disks is to guard the vertebrae by absorbing the impact that’s put in the back during day-to-day actions, such as walking, running, lifting and twisting. Excessively using the muscles in your back may lead to pull, and strain can give rise to a disk to slip. A disc usually causes extreme pain, when it slips.

If you’re experiencing unexpected pain in your back, you could be suffering from a slipped disc. Keep reading to discover more about the causes as well as the symptoms of the common, yet distressing dilemma.

The term ‘slipped disc’ is actually a misnomer, as the disks don’t really slip; instead, they rupture, split or move. These issues can create the cartilage as well as the tissues surrounding the disc can herniate, which can create the gel that sits in the disk to seep out into the surrounding tissues. The gel that is leaking can place pressure in the spinal cord, or on a neighboring nerve, which can cause serious issues for your back.

Causes of a Slipped Disc

There are a number of factors that can lead to a slipped disc. Some of the most common causes comprise an injury to the back that is due to lifting heavy things improperly; quick or improper twisting or turning; excessive strain to the back and aging, which can give rise to a loss of elasticity in the discs and also the constructions that support them. Added, injury or an accident that causes abrupt force in the back can also bring about a slipped disc.

There are numerous signs and symptoms that are associated with a slipped disc. This issue can cause a range of amounts of pain, in addition to numbness and weakness in the back, neck, or comparable limbs and/or organs. Some of the most common symptoms include:

* Numbness

* Weakness

* Tingling

* Pain in shoulder, arm, lower back, the neck, or even the hand

* Pain when moving

You must seek medical attention as soon as possible, if you think that you’re experiencing this issue. Your physician will completely evaluate your state to decide on the amount of damage you’ve sustained. This assessment includes taking X rays and maybe MRIs of the back. Once your case is reviewed by the doctor, the best treatment route will be determined.

To alleviate the pain, over the counter pain drugs can be taken, if needed, and also medication may be prescribed by your doctor. In extreme instances, when other treatment alternatives do not appear to be working, operation may be needed. This type of surgery will just be recommended as a final treatment option and is considered to be extremely invasive. You will be referred to a doctor who specializes in treating the back. The physician will fully evaluate your state and determine how to continue.