Herniated Disk Treatment
Dr. Brisson is one of the leading spine surgeons in New York City, specializing in treating spine conditions such as disc herniation.
If you are seeking treatment for a herniated disc, you may be confused by the variety of interchangeable terms that describe the condition, including bulging disc, torn disc, and slipped disc. In order to select the best treatment method for your individual situation, it’s important to understand the underlying cause of the pain. As a person’s spine degenerates with age, so do the gel-filled discs that act as shock absorbers and cushions between the vertebrae bones.
Deteriorating discs may tear, allowing the soft gel within to leak out into the spinal canal. This condition is known as disc herniation. The exuded disc material (or the bulging of the disc caused by the exuding gel) can then push against surrounding nerve roots, causing pain and other herniated disc symptoms. In addition to age-related wear and tear, a herniated disc can also be caused by an injury to the spine.
Depending on its location and the nerve roots that are pinched, a herniated disc can lead to pain, numbness, and weakness in other parts of the body. A lumbar herniated disc can cause pain from the lower back to the legs, and a cervical disc herniation can cause pain from the neck down to the arms.
Correct diagnosis of the nature of the herniated disc (determining whether the disc is bulging or has actually broken open and ruptured) is crucial to determining the correct course of treatment.
During your consultation, Dr. Brisson will thoroughly examine your back and ask questions about the type of pain that you are experiencing. He may do tests, such as an MRI or a CT, to identify the issue. In moderate cases, herniated disc treatment may involve conservative methods such as physical therapy to aid in pain management.
In severe cases, herniated disc symptoms might grossly interfere with your daily life. Sometimes, these severe cases do not respond to nonsurgical treatment, and surgery on the herniated disk may be recommended. Discectomy, which removes the disc material that is pressing on the nerve root, is the most common form of disc herniation surgery.