What is a Herniated Disk?

Definition

Lumbar or Cervical Radiculopathy, also known as a herniated (sometimes “slipped”) disk happens when a weakened part of a spinal disk allows all or part of the disk to protrude through a tear or opening . This places pressure on nearby spinal nerves, usually causing pain.

Symptoms in the lumbar (lower back) region

  • Sharp pain or even numbness in an area of one leg, hip, or buttocks.
  • A tingly or prickly feeling on the back of your calf or the sole of your foot.
  • A feeling of weakness in the same leg.

Symptoms in the cervical (neck) region

  • Sharp or deep pain during movement of your neck
  • Deep pain around the shoulder blade
  • Radiating pain through the arm

Treatment

  • Rest for a few days until acute pain from the initial injury has subsided
  • Pain and/or anti-imflammatory medications
  • Therapeutic rehabilitation once you are capable of physical motion
  • Steroid site injections (less common)
  • Surgery (last option)

Importance of Physical Therapy to a Full Recovery

Learning how to bend, lift, and even walk with greater support for your lower back is a key to avoiding recurrences of lower back pain and injuries. A trained Physical Therapist will be able to teach you exercises designed to strengthen core muscles in the back, and stretching exercises designed to alleviate pain and keep the muscles as flexible as possible after an injury. Patients who take advantage of a few sessions of physical therapy often learn enough to avoid another occurrence for the rest of their lives.

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A stroke is another neurological disease that we can treat.