A herniated disc is a disc that slips out of place or ruptures. The spinal disc is a soft cushion that sits between each vertabrae of the spine. A herniated disc occurs when the cushion that sits between the spinal vertebra is pushed outside its normal position, pinching the spinal nerves that are very close to the edge of these spinal discs.
With age, the spinal disc gradually looses its elasticity, becoming more rigid, and is more vulnerable to injury. Many herniated disc injuries occur in car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, or workplace accidents.
The symptoms include:
- Back pain that penetrates to the buttocks and legs, if the herniated disc is in your lower back
- Neck pain that penetrates to the shoulders and upper arms, if the herniated disc is in your upper back
- Tingling or numbness
- Muscle spasms or weakness
- Bowel or bladder problems
- pain and anti-inflammatory medicines
- ice and heat applications
- physical therapy
- sometimes surgery
Surgery is necessary if there are fragments of the spinal disc causing pressure on the nerve. These fragments need to be removed. This procedure is called a discectomy.
The most common surgery is called an open discectomy. An open discectomy is a procedure where the surgeon makes a small incision and looks at the actual herniated disc in order to remove the disc and relieve the pressure on the nerve. The second type of surgery is called an endoscopic microdiscectomy. The surgeon uses special instruments and a camera to remove the herniated disc through minute incisions. This procedure is done to remove the herniated disc, just like the traditional open discectomy, but uses a smaller incision.
After a severe impact, it is important to go to the hospital, have an examination, have x-rays, and let your condition stabilize. When you get into an accident, you frequently have an adrenaline rush — that rush can prevent you from feeling a herniated disc injury. Having an examination will also provide concrete evidence of your condition, should you need to seek legal representation to receive a fair compensation from the insurance.
This information is provided as a service of TSR Injury Law, a distinguished law firm with a reputation for being able to establish fault and prove liability in car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, and workplace injuries. Call 612-TSR-TIME or submit our free consultation form.