What is a Herniated Disc?

A herniated disc is a medical condition characterised by symptoms that can affect both the back and legs. The condition arises when a disc in the spine prolapses, often leading to nerve root compression and acute pain due to inflammation.

Symptoms of Herniated Disc

  • Back Symptoms: Predominantly, lower back pain can manifest on either or both sides of the body. This is particularly noticeable when an individual sits or bends forward, as this places increased pressure on the spinal discs.
  • Leg Symptoms: The condition can also produce symptoms such as leg pain, numbness, and muscle weakness.
  • Pain and Numbness Distribution: Typically, the pain or numbness radiates from the waist, extending through the thighs and down to the calves, feet, and toes. This is a result of the compression of spinal nerves.

Causes of Herniated Disc

  1. Lifting Techniques: Incorrect or heavy lifting can be a primary cause.
  2. Body Weight: Excessive body weight increases the likelihood of disc herniation.
  3. Sitting Posture: An improper sitting posture sustained over an extended period can contribute to the condition.
  4. Trauma: Accidents or sports activities that result in spinal cord injuries can also lead to a herniated disc.

Treatment Options for Herniated Disc

  • Medication: Use of anti-inflammatory medicines or muscle relaxants to alleviate pain.
  • Physical Therapy: Exercises and therapies designed to relieve back and leg symptoms.
  • Spinal Interventions: Procedures to treat the spinal column can provide relief.
  • Surgical Options: Procedures like endoscopic lumbar discectomy and microdiscectomy are often considered for severe cases.