Herniated Discs

Discs are the cartilage pads that separate and cushion and help connect the vertebrae that make up your spinal column. They serve as shock absorbers between each of the vertebrae and are constantly subjected to the pull of gravity and the torque from everyday movement. Disc problems can be the result of genetics, the normal “wear and tear” of aging, and injury.

Disc function is greatly affected by the alignment of the spine. When your disc(s) bulge, are herniated, or simply wear out, the disc can press or cause irritation to sensitive nerves in the joints, disc or the nerve root itself, the result of which can be VERY painful.

Weakness is another symptom that is commonly associated with bulging spinal discs. This, too, is due to the pressure that is placed on the nerve structures of the spine. Individuals may experience a loss of strength and function in their extremities or even their neck and shoulders, depending on the location of the bulging disc. Activities such as walking, lifting or driving could be affected by increased weakness of the extremities.

Signs and symptoms of a herniated disc may include:

  • Pain in the back
  • Tingling or numbness in the arm or leg
  • Loss of bladder or bowel control (Seek medical assistance immediately if you experience this symptom, as it may be a sign of a serious condition)
  • Muscle weakness in one arm or leg
  • Pain in neck, shoulders and/or arm

Patients who are looking for non-surgical relief of pain from conditions such as “pinched nerves” or “herniated discs” or from a failed back or neck surgery often find relief with Spinal Decompression (Traction) Therapy. In addition, patients suffering from pain due to bulging discs, sciatica, stenosis, facet syndrome, degenerative disc disease or extremity pain have been successfully treated using Spinal Decompression Therapy.

The Spinal Decompression (Traction) Table is an FDA approved mechanical device that is designed to decompress spinal joints, principally the discs, sufficiently to create a negative pressure that allows the displaced disc to reposition and improve fluid flow to the injured tissues. The improved fluid flow provides the nutrients for the disc to heal.

The process starts with a consultation. Once your doctor feels spinal decompression is appropriate, he proceeds to perform a complete history and thorough exam. The patient lies on an FDA approved machine that allows the individual’s joints to be separated sufficiently to achieve “negative disc pressure”. This creates a small vacuum which allows fluid to reenter and hydrate the disc. Sessions can vary, but one session typically lasts between 30 to 45 minutes and may include therapy, exercise instruction, heat and muscle stimulation.

We incorporate physical therapy as well as strengthening exercises for the abdominal and back muscles. Core stabilization is essential for prevention of subsequent disc problems.

Physical Therapists work closely with doctors to create an individualized program to maximize healing and restore function, strength and mobility.

For anyone who is interested in finding out more, give AdvaCare Clinics a call today at 952-835-6653, fill out or online form, or email us at scheduling@advacaremn.com!

Please check out our printable Herniated Disc Information Download!