Slipped Disc

Slipped disc is a spinal condition in which the soft cushion of tissue present in a spinal disc protrudes out of its original position. As a result, it may press on nearby nerves, causing significant pain and discomfort.

Slipped Disc Symptoms

Slipped disc is a common condition in older adults, especially men. However, the symptoms and type of pain may differ in each individual. Sometimes, people never know they have a slipped disc due to a lack of symptoms.

Following are some of the common slipped disc symptoms:

  • Lower back pain
  • Difficulty in straightening back or bending downwards
  • Pain & numbness in one particular side of the body
  • Pain that radiates to the neck, shoulders, arms, hands, legs or feet
  • Pain that becomes severe at night or after doing specific movements
  • Pain that aggravates after sitting/standing for a long time
  • Numbness, tingling or burning sensation in the affected area
  • Muscle weakness due to unknown reasons

Slipped Disc Causes

There can be a wide range of slipped disc causes. Some of the common ones are:

  • Disc degeneration due to ageing
  • Sudden, awkward movement
  • Repetitive heavy lifting
  • Heavy exercise
  • Physically demanding jobs
  • Obesity and lack of exercise
  • Vibration from operating machines or driving

Slipped Disc Diagnosis

A typical slipped disc diagnosis starts with a physical examination wherein the healthcare professional will evaluate the source of pain, symptoms, type of sensation, nerve function, muscle strength & reflexes.

You will then be enquired regarding your medical history and any particular incident/action that kickstarted the pain.

The next diagnosis step will involve imaging scans to generate detailed images of the spine and nearby regions. Following are some of the common imaging scans used for slipped disc diagnosis:

  • MRI
  • X-ray
  • CT Scan
  • Myelogram
  • Discogram
  • Electromyogram

Based on the results of the scans, the doctor will determine the cause of pain, whether there is a slipped disc and if yes, then its location, severity and potential impact on nearby nerves.

Slipped Disc Treatment

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