Where is Herniated Disc Pain Located?

Herniated Disc Pain

Herniated disc pain can be located both locally and in the extremities. Irritation of the nerve endings in the disc wall by the herniated disc material can cause local pain. Traveling symptoms, like pain, tingling, numbness, cramping, and weakness in the upper or lower extremities, result from nerve compression by the damaged disc. The specific location of these symptoms depends on the level of the spine where the herniated disc has developed.

Learning more about the causes and locations of your pain can help you find relief. Educating yourself on your condition is a huge step in the recovery process.

Why Does the Pain Spread to Other Areas?

In addition to supporting the upper body and allowing for movement, the spine also protects the spinal cord and nerve roots, which branch out to send sensory and motor signals to the rest of the body. Because all spinal components are located very close to each other, even a little displacement can cause problems. In the case of this condition, extruded material from the center can narrow the nerve pathways and pressure the spinal nerves.

What Areas Can Be Affected?

Most herniated discs occur in the upper or lower regions of the spine. This is due to the relative flexibility of these regions compared to the more stable middle spine. This condition in the lumbar region can cause symptoms in the buttocks, hips, legs, and feet. A herniated lumbar disc often causes sciatica.

Herniated discs in the cervical spine might lead to neck, shoulder, or arm pain. While less common, one in the thoracic spine can affect the chest, middle back, or abdomen.

Herniated Disc Treatment

If a herniated disc is diagnosed as the source of symptoms, treatment usually begins with conservative treatment options such as rest, medication, ice packs, and physical therapy. You may be recommended for surgery if continued treatments don’t improve symptoms enough to return to your normal activity level.

At BEST Health System, our board-certified surgeons specialize in minimally invasive outpatient surgery. This allows patients to return home on the same day of surgery, have less scarring, and enjoy a quicker recovery time. Contact our team today to learn more about outpatient surgery with BEST.