What is the Slipped Disc and How Treat That ?


However, it should be mentioned that 20% of the population has a herniated disc without experiencing any noticeable symptom.

What is the cause of a herniated disc?
– Disc herniation occurs as a result of a degeneration of the connective tissue of the annulus, which typically occurs with aging. Such consequent degeneration and weakness allow the exit of the central portion of the disc gelatinous.
– Hernias occur primarily at the level of the kidneys, being rare to chest level.
– It is possible that intense physical work increases the possibility of suffering a herniated disc.
– It can also occur from trauma, such as a fall or a car accident.

How old disc herniation occurs?
A herniated lumbar disc at the level appears most often between 30 and 50 years, and in the cervical region between 40 and 60.

Symptoms of nerve root compression
Pain, tingling and loss of strength in certain areas and muscle groups in the upper limb (arm) or lower limb (leg), depending on the affected root. In the lower limb produces sciatica or sciatic syndrome.

Symptoms of spinal cord compression
– Muscle spasm or paralysis, numbness and tingling in the part of the body located below the level of compression. For example, a compression of the spinal cord in the thoracic region cause impairment in the legs but not arms.
– A compression of the cord may also result in loss of bladder control.

Symptoms of cauda equina compression
– Symptoms include loss of bladder control, anesthesia of the rectum, anus and inner thighs (known as saddle anesthesia) and paralysis of both legs.

What are the symptoms of a herniated disc?
A hernia may be asymptomatic or may cause pain as a result of the compression on the nerve roots, spinal cord or cauda equina.

How does the doctor diagnose?
Diagnosis is made by performing an adequate clinical history (patient interview) and physical examination, in many cases can determine which is the affected disk.

Subsequently, the diagnosis is confirmed by laboratory investigations: an MRI ( Magnetic Resonance Imaging ), a CT (Computed Tomography) or myelography (injection of radiopaque contrast in the intervertebral disc).

The doctor will decide which type of scan should be performed. It is important to diagnose properly because there are several conditions that share the same symptoms.

How is the hernia?
The following cases should be considered medical emergencies should be immediately taken into account:

Whenever there are changes in symptoms should consult your doctor.

Significant changes of habit or the occurrence of bladder incontinence, the emergence of a progressive paralysis of the legs or muscle spasticity (involuntary muscle contracture excessive) should be consulted with your doctor immediately.

– Initial treatment of a herniated disc should be conservative. This consists of bed rest for up to five days and the use of analgesics and anti-inflammatory drugs. The most appropriate resting position is to remain lying down with legs half bent with a pillow under the knees to relax and the sciatic nerve. Avoid sitting. The 50% of patients will recover the table by conservative treatment.
– When treatment is not effective preservative should be weighed the possibility of a surgical intervention by a specialist.
– Physical therapy and chiropractic can also be used as treatment options.

Dr. Per Rochat , Neurosurgery specialist; Henrik Wulff Christensen , a clinical psychologist, Jan Hartvigsen , chiropractor, Dr. Dai Rees , orthopedic surgeon, Dr. John Pillinger , GP