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Herniated Disc Diagnosis and Treatment in Vernon Hills, IL

Your spine consists of 24 vertebrae (bones) that are stacked on top of each other, with a disc between each set of vertebrae. The discs of your spine are extremely important because they basically work as shock absorbers in order to protect the vertebrae. Each disc is made up of a strong outer layer (Annulus fibrosus) and a soft, jelly-like center (nucleus pulposus); the outer layer provides the disc with strength and the soft center allows the disc to work like a cushion, absorbing the shock when forces are applied to the spine.

Doctor talking about Herniated Discs.

What Problems Can Develop With Spinal Discs?

There are essentially two types of problems that can occur with spinal discs: an injury that occurs to the wall of the disc causing it to bulge or the disc begins to lose its water content and starts to flatten and deteriorate. The conditions that result from an injury or dehydration include:

  • Degenerative disc disease is a condition where one or more spinal discs begin to deteriorate. This condition often occurs as part of the aging process in which spinal discs start to dry out, causing them to lose their flexibility and shock absorption.
  • A ruptured disc is the final stage of a disc injury-the outer wall of the disc tears completely through causing the substance inside the disc to seep out of the wall of the disc.
  • A bulging disc means there is damage to the outer wall of the disc causing it to become weak and bulge into the spinal canal.
  • Herniated disc means the disk is leaking (herniating) the inner substance, which causes the disc to come in contact with the nerve root.

What are the Symptoms of Common Disc Problems?

The symptoms of disc problems vary depending on where the disc is located that is injured. However, when visiting your chiropractor in Vernon Hills, describing where the pain is located and your specific symptoms will help the chiropractic care team determine which area of your spine the disc is located such as the lumbar (lower back) region or the cervical region. Symptoms for the different locations may include:

Lumbar Symptoms

  • Low back pain
  • Leg weakness
  • Knee pain
  • Problems with bladder or bowel
  • Pain traveling down the leg

Upper Back Symptoms

  • Pain in the mid-back (between your shoulders)
  • Pain in the shoulder, arm and/or hand
  • Headaches
  • Neck pain and tension
  • Traveling pain around your rib cage
  • Digestive problems
  • Chest pains
  • Shortness of breath
  • Heart palpitations

Cervical (Neck) Symptoms

  • Neck stiffness and/or pain
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Blurred vision
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Chest pains
  • Shoulder, arm and hand pain

If you suspect you may have a problem with one or more of your spinal discs, you should contact your chiropractor in Vernon Hills as soon as possible for an examination. Chiropractic treatment will begin by first determining where the injured disc is located. In order to provide you with a diagnosis, the chiropractor does a few test, such as an MRI or X-ray to confirm the diagnosis and gather more information about treatment options.

Contact Molloy Chiropractic Center, Inc. in Vernon Hills today to schedule an appointment for your spinal examination…the sooner you begin treatment, the sooner you will be pain-free.