Do You Need Bulging Disc Treatment? See a Spine Specialist in Freehold or Monroe Township, NJ
Bulging discs are very common and not necessarily a cause for concern. The spinal discs are soft, flexible cushions that separate the vertebrae and absorb shock. Due to spinal trauma or age-related degeneration, the borders of a disc may be forced outward such that the disc extends beyond its normal boundaries in the spinal column. A bulging disc is not always painful; in fact, many people have the condition and remain completely unaware of it.
When Does a Bulging Disc Require Treatment?
The goal of bulging disc treatment is to manage the associated symptoms; therefore, treatment is usually required only if a bulging disc creates discomfort. In addition to causing localized neck or back pain, an out-of-place disc may encroach on the spinal canal, where it can potentially pinch a spinal nerve root. Depending on the location of the affected nerve, spinal nerve compression can produce a number of uncomfortable symptoms, such as:
- Numbness or tingling sensations that radiate from the spine down an arm or leg
- Leg muscle weakness and spasms
- Difficulty walking
- Loss of bladder or bowel control (a serious complication that warrants emergency medical attention)
Mild to moderate bulging disc symptoms often resolve on their own within several weeks or months. In the meantime, treatment can improve comfort.
How Is a Bulging Disc Treated?
In most cases, bulging disc treatment does not involve surgery. After confirming the diagnosis and identifying the affected disc, a physician may simply suggest a “wait and watch” approach. If necessary, any symptoms can usually be managed with conservative treatments, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), ice applications, therapeutic massage, and physical therapy. To address severe inflammation around a bulging disc, a physician may suggest a corticosteroid injection. While surgical treatment is also an option, it is generally considered only to address severe bulging disc symptoms that do not respond to conservative treatment.
Where to Seek Treatment in Freehold or Monroe Township
The board-certified orthopedic spine surgeons at Advanced Orthopedics and Sports Medicine Institute provide highly individualized treatments for spine conditions, and we emphasize conservative therapies whenever possible. Contact AOSMI to learn more about the bulging disc treatment options we offer in Freehold and Monroe Township, New Jersey.