Herniated Intervertebral Disc

This article contains medical terminology, for a description of Herniated Intervertebral Disc in a more easy to read version, see here.

What is a Herniated Intervertebral Disc?

Cartilaginous discs separate the vertebrae and act to cushion the vertebrae and add flexibility to the spine. Herniation is when the nucleus pulposus, the inner gelatinous component of the disc protrudes through a tear in the annulus fibrosus, the outer covering of the disc which is comprised of tough fibrocartilage tissue. This protrusion laterally exerts pressure onto the spinal column, and as such the nerve root as well, which can lead to nerve conduction issues. The tear on the outer disc may occur suddenly or gradually as a result of trauma, or poor body mechanics. The most common areas of herniation are in the lumbosacral discs L4 to L5 and L5 to S1, and in the cervical spine at C5 and C7. If the pressure on the nerve tissues is prolonged or there is an impingement on blood supply, nerve damage may as a result be permanent. The location of the herniation determines which sensory, motor, or autonomic functions are impaired.

Predispositions to herniations can include degenerative changes to the intervertebral disc from age or metabolic changes. Disc herniations are usually caused by trauma or excessive stress on the muscles of the back. Being location dependant, the symptoms can vary. If the herniation has occurred in the lumbosacral spine, pain is often in the lower back radiating down one or both legs like sciatic pain. This pain is usually worsened with actions such as coughing and straight leg raising. When the protrusion occurs in the cervical spine, the pain is experienced in the neck and shoulder area, radiating down the arm. Larger protrusions can be bilateral, but in most cases symptoms are unilateral. Sensory impairment, weakness, muscle spasm and reduced range of motion may occur.

What are the treatment options?

Diagnosis is made with the use of myelography with contrast dye, CT scans, and MRI’s. Treatments are generally of a conservative nature with the use of NSAID’s, pain medications, rest, heat or ice application, muscle relaxants, and traction. In severe cases surgery may be recommended including a laminectomy, or discectomy. Spinal fusions can be performed if there are more than one vertebrae involved creating spinal instability. Chemonucleolysis is a procedure that involves injecting an enzyme that breaks down and dissolves the nucleus pulposus.

How can Nubax Trio help?

Nubax Trio uses a lever system to decompress the vertebrae. This exerts a suction force from the centre of the intervertebral disc allowing the compressed disc to regain its thickness and reabsorb the protrusion. This will not only correct the herniation, but also provide safe and simple pain relief that can effectively get you back to moving freely. With the use of Nubax Trio, circulation to the intervertebral spaces is increased, providing nutrients and blood to stimulate healing and renourish the nervous system. Back traction may not be suitable in conditions that require medical attention. Check with a qualified health practitioner for the suitability of back decompression before use.

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