A vertebral disc is made up of two layers: a hard outer layer called the fibrous ring, and a soft, jelly-like core called the central pulp.

When your disc is damaged, the soft core can break open and may bulge out of the outer layer of the disc. This is called a herniated disc and can result in a moderate to severe amount of pain and discomfort. Herniated discs are most often found in the lower vertebrae.

If you think you’re experiencing symptoms from a herniated disc, you may want to consult with your doctor or make an appointment with us at Southern Laser Spine to determine the best course of treatment.

How do I know if I have a herniated disc?

A herniated disc can be caused by a number of different factors, including the natural effects of aging, injury or trauma. If we experience a fall or other serious injury, your spine might be impacted, and this can apply pressure to your spinal discs, forming a herniated disc.

When we get older, we naturally start to lose some of the fluid in our spinal discs — this fluid gives them less “bounce,” and can lead to further deterioration of the discs.

Any condition which adds pressure to the spine can cause a herniated disc to form, including:

• Sedentary lifestyle
• Repetitive motion or heavy lifting
• Obesity

What is the right treatment for me?

Most of our patients at Alexander Bone and Spine Institute experiencing a herniated disc have seen success with more conservative treatments, like stretching, pain medication, and physical therapy.

It is not often that we recommend surgery to relieve symptoms for herniated discs. If Dr. Alexander recommends surgery for a patient, it may involve the removal of a disc or spinal fusion surgery, to prevent further damage and decompression of the spine.

If you’d like to discuss possible treatments and the best course of action to relieve your pain, make an appointment with us at Alexander Bone and Spine Institute – we look forward to helping you!

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