What’s the difference between a herniated disc and a bulging disc? A herniated disc refers to the condition wherein the soft inner material of a disc ruptures and leaks out of the cracked disc. Meanwhile, a bulging disc refers to the condition wherein the disc “bulges” out between the vertebrae but the inner material is still intact and there is no damage on the disc. Bulging discs are common since they can occur without any feeling of pain. If left untreated, however, they may have a negative effect on the spinal cord and other nerves.
Sufferers of bulging disc in Northern NJ and elsewhere are common since this condition is a part of the degenerating and aging process of the vertebrae. Normally, a bulging disc does not pose any serious threat to your health but if it bulges far enough to limit the spinal canal, it might cause some serious problems like segmental spinal stenosis.
Once a bulging disc presses on a nerve, you might experience muscle weakness, numbness, and pain. If it presses into the spinal cord, you may experience muscle spasms, change in bowel or bladder function, lower body paralysis, pain in the neck and shoulder blades, and radiations of pain from the fingers to the forearm and upper arm.
While pain from a herniated disc gradually gets better within a few months, the pain from a bulging disc might get worse while performing certain activities or over time. Before a Paramus, NJ disc pain relief expert commences treatment, you will need to undergo a few diagnostic tests to check the condition of your spine. The diagnostic tests might include x-ray, MRI scan, and physical exams.
A bulging disc does not immediately require surgery as perceived by most people. Spine centers like MedWell Spine, OsteoArthritis & Neuropathy Center say that the treatment for your condition will be determined by the severity of your symptoms. A number of patients with bulging discs often manage their symptoms with the help of chiropractic care, physical therapy, and medications. While most patients respond positively to conservative treatment, there are cases when their condition calls for surgical treatment, which is when they’ll need expert help.
(Source: Bulging Disc, All About Back & Neck Pain)