How Should You Handle a Herniated Disc?

Back,Pain,Relief,Concept.,Doctor,Chiropractor,Explains,Causes,Of,BackHerniated disc injuries are complicated. They can cause pain that radiates through your body or even limb numbness and weakness. Although many people only notice minor symptoms, talking to an expert should be your first step.

What Is a Herniated Disc?

You may already know your spine isn’t one solid unit. It’s a stack of independent bones called vertebrae. What many people don’t realize is that there’s more to the picture.

Between the vertebrae, soft disc layers provide cushion and flexibility. These discs contain a core with a jellylike consistency—the nucleus—surrounded by a tougher, rubberlike shell—the annulus.

In herniated disc injuries, a tear in the annulus allows the nucleus to bulge or push out. For this reason, these incidents are also called ruptured disc injuries. However you refer to them, they can cause symptoms like muscle weakness, tingling, numbness, and pain. The severity and location of your symptoms typically depend on the injury’s location and what nerves it puts pressure on.

Treating a Herniated Disc


Herniated disc care starts with a physical checkup. Your doctor will probe your back to find any sore spots. They may also run you through neurological tests to gauge your strength, mobility, sensation, and walking ability. Most doctors also review your medical history and injury track record.

If your caregiver thinks you might have ruptured a disc, they’ll need to confirm their suspicions using:

  • Nerve Tests: Taking an electromyogram (EMG) or performing a nerve conduction study will let doctors measure how your electrical nerve signals travel. If you’ve hurt a nerve, these diagnostic procedures can make it easier to find its precise location.
  • Diagnostic Imaging: CT scans, MRIs, X-rays, and other forms of imaging can help a doctor determine a lot about your condition. Your caregiver might use imaging to pin down your herniated disc’s location, analyze nerve damage, and rule out other health problems.


Herniated disc patients have many treatment options, including over-the-counter pain medications, nerve-dulling drugs, and muscle relaxers. Physical therapy and surgery may also help. Some people gain relief from making lifestyle changes as their symptoms clear up naturally — but you still need to talk to a specialist first.

Be Proactive. Treat Your Herniated Disc.

Ready to treat your herniated disc with the help of a medical professional? Book your consultation in NYC with Todd Albert, MD. Call 202-606-1004 or schedule an appointment online.

Get In Touch

* All indicated fields must be completed.
Please include non-medical questions and correspondence only.
Location Map: 541 East 71st St. New York, NY 10021

Accessibility Toolbar