A herniated disc in the lower back is perhaps the most feared diagnosis in the entire back pain treatment industry. Patients who hear the very words "lumbar herniated disc" pronounced by their doctor are typically struck with fear and anxiety over the long term implications of their spinal condition.
This resource section will detail everything there is to know about lumbar disc bulges and ruptures. We will explore what causes lumbar disc pathologies and discover why the lower back is the area most affected by herniated discs.
A herniated disc can be confirmed using MRI, CT scan or myelogram technologies. It can not be diagnosed through a simple examination or by using x-rays.
Regardless of how a herniated disc is discovered, the nocebo effect of the diagnostic process will produce the perfect circumstances for a psychosomatic pain syndrome to develop.
We have all heard the terrible stories of people who have endured horrific back pain from a herniated disc and have even suffered an invasive and damaging surgery, yet still have severe discomfort. These stories produce a clinical picture of a herniated disc in our collective consciousness which is neither realistic nor accurate.
Here are many dedicated article topics, each dealing with a specific aspect of lumbar disc protrusions:
Lumbar bulging discs remain intact, even though they have lost their typical shape and form.
Lumbar herniated disc causes include trauma, deterioration and unknown factors.
Lumbar herniated disc injury can be a nightmarish event in the life of any patient.
Lumbar herniated disc symptoms span the gamut from a complete lack of expression to extreme, disabling pain.
Lumbar herniated disc diagnosis is accomplished with the help of advanced testing technologies.
Lumbar herniated disc exercises provide a constructive means of conservative therapy for lower back pain.
Lumbar herniated disc surgery is a risky proposition, full of possible side effects and complications.
Lumbar herniation spinal stenosis can affect the bottom of the spinal cord or the cauda equina in the lowest region of the vertebral column.
The facts of herniated discs clearly demonstrate the generally asymptomatic nature of most herniations associated with normal degenerative changes. Lumbar degenerative disc disease is an expected and universal part of the aging process, which affects all adults to one degree or another. Herniations which occur due to DDD are rarely a problem and often produce no pain at all.
Herniated discs which occur due to spontaneous injury might produce pain for a short time, but are unlikely to create lasting symptomatic conditions. The usual course of a painful disc injury will last 6 to 8 weeks, regardless of whether treatment is administered or not.
It is vital to understand that damaged discs will never themselves hurt. The only way they can produce pain is to affect a nearby neurological tissue through physical compression or chemical radiculitis.
I was diagnosed with 2 lumbar herniated discs and still remember feeling immediate fear when the words were uttered by my doctor. My mother had a horrible herniated disc experience, before my birth, and I heard all the torturous details from her, on more than one occasion. Even though I had already been suffering severe back pain for several years already, the diagnosis of 2 disc bulges was like a hammer to my head and a knife in my heart.
My pain grew steadily worse after the diagnosis and continued to battle for control of my life, until I finally defeated it, albeit temporarily, after 18 long years of suffering and innumerable attempts at treatment.
I can only estimate the total cost of my out of pocket expense, spent treating my herniated discs, at over $60,000 to $70,000 over those years. Add to this cost the considerable time away from work and the eternity spent suffering in dire agony, and you have a price which can not be truly described.
Now, many years have passed and I have terrible pain once again, only now the misery resides in many more parts of my anatomy, including the neck, upper back, lower back and legs.
I now have a total of 12 herniated discs, which accounts for more than half of the discs in my spine. If you are suffering, I know what you are going through. Hang in there and keep researching to fully understand your condition. This is the most important step towards achieving a successful cure.