There are several options for treatment and most of the range on the availability of patients, and the severity of their injury. If the situation is not as severe, then usually the route will entail rehabilitation and chiropractic treatment.
One of the more serious conditions that can affect your back is a spinal disc injury. These are some of the most debilitating and painful problems as they can greatly increase sensitivity and lack of mobility. In order to diagnose an injury like this is that it usually requires medical history and examinations. During an exam, for example, the doctor will first check your upper and lower back for sensitivity and tenderness. The location of the pain, and what actions it takes to cause it, will be the first step for determining if it is a herniated disc.
What Kind Of Tests Are There?
In most cases, these two tests will be all they need to gather enough information and diagnose you. However, if there are more factors at play, or it is more extreme than normal, the doctor will probably want you to undergo another series of tests. These are going to be far more invasive and more than likely expensive. The possible options consist of an X-ray, CT scans, then MRIs and Myelograms. Each has a variety of uses, for instance, the X-ray doesn’t detect herniated discs, but the may rule out some of the other possibilities that could be causing the pain. The CT Scan is essentially a multi-angled X-ray, that shows you a much more extensive view. MRIs are most often used to determine the exact location of the herniated disc; they can even point out which nerves are affected. Finally, a myelogram could be used to determine the pressure on your spine. This is important because of more times than not, its the pressure that is causing the disc to herniate. There are also treatments that will conduct tests on whether or not the nerves are allowing electric impulses to move along the tissue freely. Locations of blockage or slower connection can determine a point of nerve damage.
There are several options for treatment and most of the range on the availability of patients, and the severity of their injury. If the situation is not as severe, then usually the route will entail rehabilitation and chiropractic treatment. Decompressing the back can help immensely in realigning a herniated disc. In fact, it is very likely that the underlying problem causing the issue was originally compression on the spine. In order to maintain a proper healing cycle, the regimen is usually carried out over a few weeks with exercises for strength and pain medication to subside the pain. This type of treatment is known as the conservative route.
A lot of the time, certain medications are used to help alleviate the issues while you heal, too. As stated earlier pain medications are often prescribed for these conditions as the pain can be very high. Most of the times these are used in addition to other types of treatments. Other drugs such as anticonvulsants and muscle relaxers can be selected because they can help reduce some of the symptoms that might occur. Some of those are muscle spasms and seizures, which can be very dangerous complications. Finally, options such as cortisone injections will aid in reducing swelling and inflammation.
If Nothing Else, Surgery Can Help
If your pain remains chronic, despite the treatments. This would entail exhausting options such as physical therapy and your doctor believes there is no other option. Usually, this is decided after around 6 weeks of conservative treatments. When there’s not any sign of recovery, or the symptoms increase to further numbness, difficulty standing, and loss of bladder or bowel control, then it’s imperative that you pursue a surgical solution. It isn’t very difficult, but it is very serious because they are dealing with nerves which — if damaged — could result in lifelong injury.
For the most part, though, the surgeon can remove the protruding piece of the disk and it will return to normal. When this occurs, the vertebrae in question will be fused back with a metal substitute for stability. In the event of serious injury, the surgeon may instead opt for implanting a disc made of artificial materials. Either way, this is the last resort scenario and most cases aren’t that serious! If you are experiencing pain in your back that might be caused by a herniated disc, come see a chiropractor! Our own techniques of spinal decompression can fix your issues at the source, and even realign your back entirely!