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|Back pain is a major cause of disability in our society. There are a
number of problems that can cause pain in the back and neck. Most
forms of back pain are biomechanical in nature and can be treated
appropriately with Massage Therapy, Physiotherapy or Chiropractic
care to remedy the underlying cause. Your medical doctor may have
already requested X-rays or recommended medication to alleviate
your symptoms while you are undergoing these treatments.
If your pain persists for more than 12 weeks or is not resolved by
the usual treatment modalities, you may have an underlying disc
pathology which is more complex and difficult to treat.
Vertebral discs are very important structures that act like shock
absorbers between the vertebrae They hold the bones together and
allow for movement of the spine. The disc is like a jelly donut with a
tough outer layer called the annulus; which is like leather. It holds
the bones together and contains the nucleus pulposus (jelly) inside.
The central core of "jelly" is under immense pressure and provides
cushioning between the bones. Under stress or with trauma, the
tough outer layer can weaken or tear and the jelly may leak out or
dehydrate. The disc becomes thinner, less cushy and may bulge out.
If the disc bulges too far it may irritate the spinal cord or the nerve
coming out of the spine at that level. This creates pain, muscle
weakness, numbness or the sensation of pins/ needles in the limbs.
Unfortunately the disc does not have many blood vessels to feed
the tissues; therefore, it cannot heal itself. Your pain will persist or
will keep coming back if stress or strain your back. If your symptoms
are from a damaged disc- you will require treatment.
Click on the "Next" button for treatment options.