Disc Extrusion Symptoms
Disc extrusion symptoms vary depending on the severity of the extrusion, or herniation, and its location along the spine. However, understanding how to recognize the symptoms is a vital part of the diagnostic process. If you begin to experience symptoms that may be caused by an extruded disc, write down some notes about the location, severity, nature, and frequency of your discomfort. The more information you can give your physician, the more accurate the diagnosis will be.
Understanding Common Disc Extrusion Symptoms
Symptoms of a disc extrusion may be hard to identify because the discomfort is often referred to as pain, which is pain that occurs in a region of the body that’s different from the actual site of the condition. Below is a brief description of how an extruded disc in the neck or back can cause referred pain in the extremities:
- Extrusion. This is due to degeneration or injury when the outer wall of a spinal disc tears and the inner disc material extrudes into the spinal canal. This extrusion can lead to nerve compression. The primary cause of disc extrusion is degeneration associated with the natural aging process, which cannot always be prevented.
- Compression. This occurs when the extruded inner disc material compresses nearby spinal nerves. These nerves are responsible for sending sensory and motor signals throughout the body, including the arms, hands, legs, and feet. A compressed nerve will send a distress signal to the brain.
- Pain. You feel pain when the brain interprets signals from the compressed nerve and tells the affected regions of the body to react accordingly. Mild nerve compression can cause radiating pain, while prolonged, severe nerve compression can cause the nerve to fail, leading to disc extrusion symptoms of weakness, tingling, numbness, or muscle atrophy.
Minimally Invasive Treatment Options with BEST Health System
For many people who experience a disc extrusion, surgery may not be required to achieve lasting pain relief. If you have a disc extrusion, you may be able to find relief using nonsurgical treatment.
Your physician will likely suggest nonsurgical disc extrusion treatments that may include pain medication, gentle yoga, lifestyle changes, low-impact exercise, or other options. If weeks or months of nonsurgical treatments have not helped you find relief, you may want to explore surgical options. BEST Health System offers minimally invasive spine surgery to help treat the root causes of disc extrusion, without the highly invasive nature and lengthy recovery of traditional open spine surgery. Contact BEST to learn more.