Bulging Disc Treatment in Pittsburgh, PA
A disc provides a layer of cushion between the bones (vertebrae) of the back. Discs are also responsible for absorbing shock and vibration. The outside of a disc is made from firm cartilage and the center is softer and more sponge-like. Bulging discs occur when the disc begins to lose strength and pressure from the spine forces the disc to expand beyond its normal boundaries and into the spinal canal.
Bulging discs are common, and many people never realize they have a problem. The bulge itself is not a problem, but if the disc comes in contact with nerves of the spine, pain and other symptoms can develop.
To learn more about bulging discs and available treatment options, please call (724) 915-1049 or contact Medical Wellness Associates online.
Bulging Disc Symptoms
Most bulging discs occur in the lower back. Symptoms will vary depending on the location of the bulge, but could include:
- Difficulty walking or a feeling of heaviness
- Dull, sharp or burning pain that radiates
These symptoms can occur in the arms, hands, shoulders, hips, chest, buttocks, legs or feet. If the bulge is high-up near the neck - symptoms will be felt in the shoulders, hands or arms. Low bulges will result in hip, buttock, leg or foot pain.
Diagnosing a Bulging Disc
To diagnose a bulging disc, your healthcare provider will take a thorough history and do a physical exam . Make sure to tell him or her about your pain, what makes it worse or better, where it radiates to and what the pain feels like (burning, stabbing, tingling, etc.). You may also need an MRI, CT scan or X-ray to confirm the diagnosis.
Bulging Disc Treatment
The goal of treatment for a bulging disc is to reduce swelling. Your provider will start this process by prescribing anti-inflammatory medications, exercise, stretching, hot or cold compresses and rest. If these approaches don't help, you may consider more aggressive treatment options like surgery.
Surgery should be considered as a last step and might require several days in the hospital. Today, doctors are finding more ways to treat bulging discs with less impact to the muscles and structures of the back, and many patients can have surgery as an outpatient - going home the same day.
Preventing a Bulging Disc
The best way to prevent a bulging disc is to stay as healthy as possible. This means:
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Not smoking
Keeping your body strong and supporting its processes with healthy habits, good food and proper nutrients helps to keep your discs - and your entire body strong.
Request Additional Information
To request additional information about treatment of bulging discs, please call (724) 915-1049 or contact Medical Wellness Associates online.
Medical Wellness Associates
Jeannette, PA 15644
8:00 am - 7:30 pm
Tue: 9:00 am - 5:30 pm
Wed: 8:00 am - 7:30 pm
Thu: 8:00 am - 5:30 pm
Fri: 8:00 am - 2:00 pm
Sat: 8:00 am - 12:00 pm