Doctor insights on:
Can I Die From Herniated Disk If I Ignore It
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
Depends: Sometimes they are not the cause of a pain as they can be found in people who have no spine problems. For those that it does, most just get better with time. Additional help can be through: activity modification, guided exercise , medication, epidural steroid injections, and if all fails, surgery. Being a smoker, obese and not an exerciser but you at a higher risk of failing treatment. ...Read more
Time & exercise: A herniated disc does not necessary require treatment. If there is associated nerve root compression/irritation then treatment may be required. Understand that 90% of pain associated with nerve root irritation will resolve with time. Otc prescription nsaids, oral steroids, heat/cold and stretching exercises will help resolve the acute pain. If not then epidural steroids may be beneficial. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Depends: Believe it or not many herniated discs cause no symptoms at all. If the herniation irritates or compresses a nearby spinal nerve root, people will often report back and leg pain on the side of the herniation. Depending on which disc herniates, the pain can occur on the front, side or back of the thigh and leg and can go down into the foot. Some people will have weakness and numbness. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Yes you can: You can over treat any disease. It all depends what the complains of the patient are. If the pain is very minimal and the person can control it with over the counter medication, every other form of treatment would be considered over treatment. On the other hand, there are forms of disc herniation that fail all conservative measures and need surgery. Every case is unique and requires common sense. ...Read more
The best ...: Most are diagnosed through a clinical evaluation with testing done to confirm the diagnosis as the number of disc herniations found in patients without symptoms increases with age. Knowing that, MRI is probably the best imaging test followed by a ct. A myelogram-ct is excellent as well with a contrast MRI the best test for people with prior back surgery to distinguish post op scar from a disc. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Possibly: If the herniation is acute (just happened) a common course is that these issues resolve on their own within 6-8 weeks. Often physical therapy and anti-inflammatories are important in the healing process. If the pain does not resolve with these conservative measures or is accompanied by lower extremity weakness/numbness you should seek the care of an expert as soon as possible. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Depends: It depends on size, amount of inflammation, location (neck, mid back, low back, against spinal cord, against nerve but not cord). Sometimes it keeps nerves or spinal cord from working properly. Other times it causes pain. Sometimes it is silent (no symptoms, problems). Most improve with time. Treatment depends on how severe the symptoms are, whether or not they are worsening, & how long they last. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Proper evaluation: This needs an appropriate evaluation. How much damage is it causing. A few need immediate emergency surgery while most need appropriate physical therapy. In some cases injection of corticosteroids in the back in a location called the epidural space between the spinal cord and the vertebrae, this is done to decrease swelling around the disk to decrease pain and let the herniation resolve. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Many: As long as there is no neurological damage (numbness or weakness or bowel/bladder dysfunction), then you can start with daily stretching and core strengthening exercises. Pt or chiropractic care can help. Cortisone injections are popular. Surgery if all else fails. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Depends: It depends on size, location, and how large your spinal canal (channel where the nerves and spinal cord are). If it pushes on your spinal cord and affects its function, it is potentially very serious. If it pushes on a nerve and there is enough irritation to lose strength and feeling that is progressive or severe, it is also a problem. Most herniations are not this serious, improving with time. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Be patient: Most (more than 90%) will improve with time, but it takes 6 to 12 weeks. Anti-inflammatory medication (like Ibuprofen and naproxen) may hasten the process, but be careful of side effects (read the package insert).Trying to maintain regular activities and exercise may also help you recover. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
75% better 3 months: Most people get better between 2 to 12 weeks from the onset of their extremity pain. This is about 75% without any surgery & does not depend on any one type of treatment or any at all. The rest get better up to one year with about 10% needing surgery with appropriately indicated surgeries doing well 90% as long as they are non smokers, not obese & not diabetic. Those in shape do best in all ! ...Read more
Time, meds, exercise: Most disc herniations get better with time, 90%. Activity modification with guided exercise, medication and epidural steroid injections are options and if no better after 12 weeks, surgery may be an option. Lifestyle changes like not smoking, not being obese and regularly exercising will minimize any future back problems as well as taking adequate vitamin d and calcium. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
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