Five Alternatives to Collapsed Disc Surgery

Understanding Collapsed Discs

A collapsed disc is a condition where one of the spinal discs that cushion the vertebrae begins to lose height. This is usually related to the natural aging process that causes the discs to dry out and become less able to withstand the pressure being placed on them. Collapsed discs can cause symptoms if disc material bulges out of its normal place in the spinal column and puts pressure on an adjacent nerve.

Patients with collapsed discs may be wondering if spine surgery is necessary to find lasting relief from any pain they’re experiencing. While surgery can be effective, most doctors will make sure that patients explore nonsurgical conservative options before collapsed disc surgery becomes a serious consideration.

Five Collapsed Disc Surgical Alternatives

Your doctor may recommend various alternatives to collapsed disc treatment. These are five of the most common.

  1. Physical therapy. Working with a licensed physical therapist can help improve flexibility and strength in the muscles around the spine, potentially relieving symptoms.
  2. Spinal injections. An injection of a numbing agent and a corticosteroid can relieve pain and inflammation in the area for some time while the progress of the condition is monitored.
  3. Hot and cold therapy. Alternating a cold compress, such as an ice pack, with a heat source can help numb the area, improve circulation, and reduce inflammation.
  4. Therapeutic massage. Massages can relax tense muscles and potentially relieve some of the pressure on the spine.
  5. Medication. Over-the-counter or prescription anti-inflammatory medication can help relieve a flare-up of pain.

Work with your doctor to find the right treatment, or combination of collapsed disc treatments, for you and your needs. It is also important to commit to making any recommended lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking or following a weight-management plan that can contribute to the long-term health of your spine.

When to Consider Surgery

If you have exhausted all conservative treatment options, it is important to consult your doctor about minimally invasive surgical options. BEST Health System offers premium spine surgery to patients who do not want to undergo traditional spine surgery. Contact us today to connect with one of our patient care coordinators.