Surgery for herniated disc. Your spine is set up to support the entire upper half of your body as well as protect the spinal cord which delivers nerves to your entire body, so naturally, it needs to be supported by solid mechanisms. The spine is set up so that there are a number of bones that stack on top of each other called vertebrae.
These are the bumps you feel in your back. If you can reach your back. Each of these vertebrae sandwich a layer of soft fluid that is surrounded by plastic fibers that work to absorb most of the weight and keep the bones from grinding against each other.
These are the disks. When the fiber that surrounds them tears, they can push out of where they are supposed to be, putting pressure on the spinal cord. This can really hurt.
Most often, this happens at the lower back, because that’s where our center of gravity is, and it supports the entire upper half of our body, unless we are walking on our hands, in which case, it supports our legs. When it happens in the lower back, this is known as the lumbar region.
The lumbar region is anywhere between the ribcage and the pelvis. When a disc herniates here, most of the nerves in the upper body have already branched off, so they will probably press up against the sciatic nerve.
The sciatic nerve is the largest single nerve in the body, and it extends all the way down the leg to the bottom of the feet, meaning that when a disc gets herniated and presses against this, it can have effects on an entire leg, making it numb, tingly, or in pain.
There are a few things that can put you at risk for getting herniated discs, and a few of them are preventable, a few of them aren’t. First off, it helps to be in good health. Obese or overweight people put a lot more strain on their spines than healthier people do, simply because the spine has to carry much more weight than it was designed to hold.
As such, it helps to stay in good shape and to keep your body in good working condition. Another risk factor is smoking. Don’t smoke. It destroys everything. The major risk factor, however, is the least controllable: age. Bodies just degenerate over time.
It’s a natural process, and it’s going to happen regardless of what you do. If you stay in good health, however, it will probably be less severe. Most herniated discs repair themselves over a relatively short period of time, maybe giving you a few months of back pain and not much more.
There are other treatments to consider before getting surgery for herniated disc problems. There is the epidural, which is basically when you shoot an anti-inflammatory agent into someone’s spine, which immediately takes pressure off the nerve and can basically take away the pain while the disc has time to heal.
There are some pain-killers that can be taken for the milder cases, and it’s possible to get certain braces which will just take pressure off that particular disc. Another possibility is to get physical therapy, which will teach you how to treat it doing exercises on your own.
There are a few other types of procedures that have mixed records. One that gets a lot of commercial time is the non-surgical spinal decompression. There are certainly a lot of ads for this out there, but there isn’t any evidence that it actually helps you get rid of pain on a consistent basis. So do this at your own risk.
Surgery for herniated disc problems is an absolute last resort. Spinal surgery is never an easy process, and you want to avoid having to go through it at all costs. There are a number of different surgery for herniated disc options, including just relieving the pressure on your nerve, replacing the disc with an artificial device, and a number of other of things, but none of these are ideal.
Really, if you’re feeling serious pain in your back, you should not be looking online. You should be going to the doctor. Here is where I should tell you that I am not a doctor and I’m not in any way qualified to give medical advice, so don’t take anything I said here as medical advice. Because it’s not. Jerk.