Herniated Disc Human Anatomy Period 2. Jackie Houser Devaun Henry Bryanah Hughes
What is herniated disc? • A herniated disk is a disk that ruptures. Which is when the jelly-like center of the disk to leak, which will irritate the nerves near it. • A painful rupture of the fibrocartilage of the disc between spinal vertebrae (occurs most often in the lower back region) • Your spine is made up of 26 bones called vertebrae. In between them are soft discs filled with a jelly-like substance. These discs cushion the vertebrae and keep them in place. As you age, the discs break down as they break down, they lose their cushioning ability. • This can lead to pain if the back is stressed.
Causes • In many cases a herniated disc is related to the natural aging of your spine. (disc degeneration) • In children and young adults, discs have more water then in adults. • As we get older our discs begin to dry out and weaken. The discs begin to shrink and the spaces between the vertebrae get smaller. • Men between the ages of 30-50 are most likely to have a herniated disc. • Using your back muscles to lift heavy objects, instead of using your legs, can cause a herniated disc.
Causes #2 • Twisting while you lift can also make your back vulnerable. • Being overweight puts added stress on the discs in your lower back. • Jobs that require constant lifting, pulling, bending and/or twisting. • Driving, constantly staying seated for long periods of time including the vibration from the car engine, can put pressure on your spine and discs. • It is believed that smoking lessens oxygen supply to the disk and causes quicker degeneration.
Symptoms • Back pain, Lower back pain. • Leg and/or foot pain • This leg pain typically moves below the knee, and sometimes into the foot and ankle. • It is described as moving from the back or butt down the leg into the foot. • Numbness or a tingling sensation in the leg and/or foot. • Weakness in the leg and/or foot. • Loss of bladder or bowel control (extremely rare)
Examination • Neurological examination to check for weakness or sensory loss. • MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) • Straight leg raise (SLR) test. • In the test, you lie on your back and your doctor lifts your affected leg. If you feel pain down your leg and below the knee, you test positive for a herniated disk.
Treatment • Rest • Anti-inflammatory medications (to relieve pain) • Physical therapy • Epidural steroid injection ( to reduce inflammation) • Surgery (Microdiscectomy- removal of the herniated part of the disc and parts putting pressure on the spinal nerve) • Rehabilitation (after surgery, physical therapy)