Disc Prolapse

What is Disc Prolapse ?

The spinal cord is very important because they hold the nerves from the brain. These nerves travel between the vertebrae to relay messages to all parts of the body. The spinal cord is made up of ma...

Symptoms

The symptoms of disk prolapse depend on the area of the nerve affected in the injury. The symptoms that can occur with disc prolapsed include: 

  • Back pain
  • Neck pain
  • Loss of control of bladder
  • Loss of control of bowels
  • Impotence in men
  • Numbness or ‘pins and needles’ in both arms and legs
  • Pain in the shoulders
  • Pain in the buttocks
  • Weakness in the arms and legs

Causes

Disc prolapse occurs due to building up of excessive pressure in the spinal cord. It usually occurs in the lumbar spine or the lower back, in cervical spine or neck and rarely in thoracic spine or mid-back region.
Some causes of disc prolapsed could be:

  • Landing on your buttocks when you fall from significant heights
  • Bending forward and lifting very heavy objects
  • Weakening of outer fibers due to repetitive minor injuries that accumulate
  • over time and age factor
  • Twisting and pivoting at awkward angles

Risks

You could be at a risk of disc prolapse if you:

  • Have a job that requires you to lift heavy weights
  • Have anatomical abnormalities
  • Unhealthy lifestyle
  • Degenerative conditions
  • Family history of disc prolapsed
  • Participation in high-impact sports

Prevention

Disc prolapse can be prevented by: 

  • Decreasing the stress on the spine
  • Reducing the body weight if you are obese
  • Exercising regularly
  • Avoiding activities that could be risky and hazardous for
  • Improving your posture when you sit, stand, walk and sleep

How is it diagnosed?

To diagnose a disc prolapse, your doctor at Medanta will conduct a thorough medical analysis of the history of your problem. The medical analysis will comprise of details related to the occurrence ...

How is it treated?

Generally, simple cases of disc prolapses get cured by themselves in a time span of six to eight weeks. However, your doctor at Medanta can take the following route depending on the severity of the condition

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  • Conservative Treatments

    If the spinal cord damage or nerve root compression is not severe; the treatment methods followed for disc prolapse are conservative in nature. This method involves a combination of pharmacotherapy and physiotherapy. Anti-inflammatory and paracetamol based medicines are prescribed along with mild exercises.If there is not any significant progress in this process, there might be a need for a surgery, based on the area affected and the extent of damage. A nerve sheath injection is given to the spinal cord, under the influence of local anesthesia. Surgery has been proven as a reliable method for treating disc prolapse. In most of the cases, the recovery after the surgery has been observed to be speedy.

  • Surgery

    If there is not any significant progress in this process, there might be a need for a surgery, based on the area affected and the extent of the damage. A nerve sheath injection is given to the spinal cord, under the influence of local anesthesia. Surgery has been proven as a reliable method for treating disc prolapse. In most of the cases, the recovery after the surgery has been observed to be speedy. 
    At Medanta, depending on the requirements, surgeries are tailor-made to suit the diagnostics and the condition of the patient. Your neurosurgeon will, therefore, recommend a suitable course of action based on your condition.

When do I contact the doctor?

Do contact your doctor immediately, if you recognize the symptoms of disc prolapse, like back pain, loss of bladder control, weakness and pain in arms and legs, etc. 

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