Intervertebral discs, or spinal discs, are round, cartilage-like cushions that sit between the bones of the spine. They act as shock absorbers when you twist or move your spine. A disc herniation occurs when the soft center of one of these discs squeezes out through the dense outer layer of the disc. This leakage irritates the nearby spinal nerves and causes inflammation. Herniated discs are most common in the lower back (lumbar spine) but can also occur in the neck (cervical spine).
If you’re living with pain from a cervical or lumbar herniated disc in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV, the neurologists at Dignity Health - St. Rose Dominican hospitals want to help. Find a Doctor online or by calling (702) 616-4900.
What Causes Disc Herniation?
Health care experts have found several factors that can increase your risk of developing a herniated disc, including:
- Frequent strenuous activity
- Family history of herniated disc
- Being overweight, which puts extra stress on the spine
- Natural aging, as discs become weaker and more rigid with age
- Sports-related or accidental trauma
Herniated Disc Symptoms
The symptoms of herniated disc depend on its location in the spine. Symptoms can include:
- Headache, especially in the back of the head, when the herniated disc is in the neck
- Weakness, numbness, or tingling in a leg or arm
- Sharp, achy, or burning pain that shoots down the buttock, leg, or arm
Certain movements, such as sitting down, coughing, sneezing, and bending over, can put extra pressure on the nerve. This tends to make symptoms worse. See a doctor for proper treatment to prevent permanent nerve damage.
Herniated Disc Treatment at Dignity Health - St. Rose Dominican Hospitals
Most people with herniated discs respond to conservative treatment options, including:
- Medications, including prescription pain medicine, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and muscle relaxers
- Steroid injections into the spine to relieve pain and reduce nerve inflammation
- Home care measures including posture changes, heat, ice, and rest
- Physical therapy including back bracing, traction, and exercises
In some cases, surgery is necessary to remove all or part of the herniated disc.
Controlling risk factors is the most common way to help prevent herniated disc. This means:
- Regularly performing exercises to stabilize and strengthen the spine
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Practicing good posture
Your doctor or physical therapist can help with these activities.
Dignity Health - St. Rose Dominican offers treatment for neurological conditions
, including herniated disc, in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV.