If you are a Connecticut resident experiencing back pain, you may wonder if you have a herniated disc. This condition occurs when the outside shell of the disc ruptures and the soft, jelly-like nucleus leaks out. This condition is about twice as likely in men than in women. While it can happen to people of any age, it most commonly occurs in people between 20 and 50, and it happens more frequently in people with a body mass index over 30. Doctors often see three different types of herniated discs.
Lumbar herniated discs
People with lumbar herniated discs often first experience low back pain. The pain usually is at a low to moderate level when lying down but at a much higher level when walking, sitting or standing. This type of herniated disc often affects the sciatic nerve wherein the person may experience pain radiating from the lower back down one leg or the other. It may sometimes go down both legs and feels like an electrical shock. If the condition progresses, it can cause numbness or weakness, usually on one side of the body.
Cervical herniated disc
A herniated disc can also occur in the neck vertebra. When it does, it often causes a person’s arms, hands or fingers to feel painful or numb. The person may have trouble holding things.
Cauda equina syndrome
While not as common, the disc along the spine can also become herniated, and this type of spinal cord injury often leads to incontinence. A person may struggle to walk or even control their leg movements and often lose feeling in the buttocks, groin and thighs.
Anyone experiencing numbness or pain in their extremities or around their middle or incontinence may have a herniated disc. Recovery times vary depending on the person and injury, so it’s a good idea to get checked out by a doctor.