Doctor insights on:
Can A Bulging Disk Heal On Its Own
Yes!: Most lumbar disc herniations tend to heal on their own. Anti-inflammatory medication and traction type of therapy often helps to relieve the pain. The herniated disc often takes up to 3 months to heal. Seek medical attention if there is progressive pain, inability to walk, numbness, weakness, or any changes with bowel/bladder function. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
The disks are protective shock-absorbing pads between the bones of the spine (vertebrae). The disks of the spine are also referred to as intervertebral disks. Although they do not actually "slip, " a disk may move, split, or rupture. This can cause the disk cartilage and nearby tissue to fail (herniate), allowing the inner gel portion of the disk to escape ...Read more
Herniated disk: Most herniated discs heal on their own. Initial rest, physical therapy and anti inflammation medication all work to speed up the healing time. Surgery is reserved for discs that don't respond to the above interventions with continued uncontrollable pain or motor deficit. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Does a l5-s1 bulging disk fully heal over time? If it does, how long does it approximitly take to heal? There is a slight tingling in my heel.
No: Bulging discs never unbuge by themselves. It is possible that symptoms attributed to the bulging disc may resolve over a period of weeks to months. This happens when swelling is the primary cause of irritation of nerve roots causing sciatica. As swelling subsides the symptoms resolve. If the disc is herniated ( excessive bulging) and it causes paralysis and severe pain; it often needs surgery. ...Read more
Abnormal appearance: A bulging disc refers to an intervertebral disc that has extended past its original footprint, so to speak, and may be pushing up against the nerves. The bulge may involve the firm rind (annulus), or the watery disc material in the middle of the disc (nucleus pulpous). The bulge may cause a lot of pain, weakness, or numbness, or none at all. ...Read more
" bulging disk": Initial treatment for symptomatic bulging disc is conservative (eg physical therapy, non-opioid analgesics, etc.) and also addresses preventative measures. Depending on severity of the symptoms, injections for pain control may be utilized. For more severe cases, surgery may be indicated. The course of treatment is determined by symptoms and objective findings. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Minimal process: Wear and tear can cause degeneration in the vertebral column, and cause discs to deteriorate. The supportive basket, nucleus fibrosis develops small tears. A bulge is minimal perhaps a few millimeters, and is clinically insignificant, but additional disc displacement such as protrusion or herniation may compress nerve or spinal cord. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Do they hurt?: The mere fact of 3 bulging discs (or 2 or 5) means nothing. What is important is how the condition affects your well-being. I have plenty of patients with terrible looking MRI scans who have no pain and function very well. On the other hand it is not at all unusual to see a person whose scan looks quite normal, yet is in incapacitating pain. ...Read more
Variable: Some people are completely asymptomatic from disc bulges. Some people experience profound pain (radiculitis) and motor and sensory loss (radiculopathy). Back pain is variable as well but usually affects people with acute herniated discs due to annular tears and chemical secretion. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Wear and tear can cause degeneration in the vertebral column, and cause discs to deteriorate. The supportive basket, nucleus fibrosis develops small tears. A bulge is minimal perhaps a few millimeters, and is clinically insignificant, but additional disc displacement such as protrusion or herniation may compress ...Read more
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