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Houston, TX
A 27-year-old female asked:

Can a herniated disk at l5-s1 protruding centrally into the thecal sac affect a person's bowel movements?

2 doctor answers10 doctors weighed in
Dr. Ahmad M Hadied
Orthopedic Surgery 51 years experience
Yes: Be careful. Qauda equine syndrome, a rare disorder affecting the bundle of nerve roots (cauda equina) at the lower (lumbar) end of the spinal cord, is a surgical emergency. If patients with cauda equina syndrome do not get fast treatment to relieve the pressure, it can result in permanent paralysis, impaired bladder and/or bowel control, loss of sexual sensation, and other problems.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. Thomas Dowling
Orthopedic Spine Surgery 42 years experience
Yes it occurs in 1% : Of all herniated discs and it is called a cauda equina syndrome and it is a true surgical emergency with the best outcome with surgery done within the first 24 hours of symptoms with decreasing chances of recovery over time. It usually would involve both bowel & bladder control with numbness & tingling in those regions.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Last updated Feb 9, 2019


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