Herniated Disc

Atlas Neurosurgery and Spine Center

Neurosurgery located in Phoenix, AZ & Sun City West, AZ

Herniated discs often cause severe pain and affect mobility, and problems such as pinched nerves and sciatica. If you have back pain, expert neurosurgeons Abhishiek Sharma, MD, and Erik Curtis, MD, of Atlas Neurosurgery and Spine Center in Phoenix, provide an accurate diagnosis and a range of highly effective treatments, including advanced surgical procedures for repairing or replacing herniated discs. Schedule your consultation by calling Atlas Neurosurgery and Spine Center today, or book an appointment online.

Herniated Disc Q & A

What is a herniated disc?

A herniated disc, or slipped disc, is a condition where the inside of the disc that sits between each vertebra bulges through the outer coating and presses on the spinal nerves. This pressure causes back or neck pain, as well as other symptoms such as weakness and numbness in your legs.

Spinal discs are round, shock-absorbent pads that protect the bones in your spine. There’s one in between each of your vertebra. Discs have a softer interior the consistency of jelly, and a protective outer shell that protects the interior. However, sometimes the jelly-like interior pushes through its protective outer layer.

What causes a herniated disc?

A herniated disc could be due to damage from wear and tear over months and years, or an acute injury. As you age, your spinal discs naturally retain less fluid, making them drier and harder, and they begin to shrink. This makes them weaker and more prone to damage.

Factors such as being obese and having a job or hobby that involves making repetitive, strenuous movements also increase your risk of developing a herniated disc.

When you visit Atlas Neurosurgery and Spine Center, the team diagnoses your condition by listening to your symptoms and conducting a physical examination, followed by an MRI to get a detailed look at the extent of the problem.

How are herniated discs treated?

Many people with herniated discs recover after following a carefully managed conservative treatment plan consisting of:

  • Plenty of rest
  • Pain medication
  • Muscle relaxants and anti-inflammatory medications
  • Cold compresses or ice packs
  • Physical therapy
  • Acupuncture
  • Chiropractic care

Your provider at Atlas Neurosurgery and Spine Center can administer epidural spinal injections containing corticosteroids to reduce inflammation and relieve pain.

Would I need surgery for a herniated disc?

If your symptoms don’t improve after following a conservative treatment program, the team at Atlas Neurosurgery and Spine Center discusses surgical options with you. These include:

  • Anterior cervical discectomy
  • Anterior cervical discectomy with fusion (ACDF)
  • Cervical disc arthroplasty
  • Cervical corpectomy
  • Minimally invasive cervical discectomy
  • Anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF)
  • Lumbar corpectomy and fusion
  • Minimally invasive lumbar discectomy
  • Spinal fusion
  • Spinal decompression

The surgeons at Atlas Neurosurgery and Spine Center are particularly skilled in using minimally invasive surgical techniques and robot-assisted surgery to provide optimal outcomes for their patients.

If you have back or neck pain, find a resolution by calling Atlas Neurosurgery and Spine Center today, or book an appointment online.