What is Slip Disc?


A disc is small mass of elastic, gristle-like tissue located between each vertebra in the spinal column. Discs act as shock absorbers for the spinal bones. Thick ligaments attached to the vertebrae hold the pulpy disc material in place.


Also known as "Herniated Disc", slipped disc occurs when the part of the spinal cord where the nerve originated may be disturbed, for example by a slipped or ruptured disc or by an inflammation in the vertebral bone. An abnormal condition of a nearby blood vessel may cause it to press on the nerve. Sometimes, the condition called sciatic neuritis is actually pressure from one of the bones of the spine pressing on the nerves. This condition is frequently called, "slipped disc".

When you have a slipped disc, it is most likely accompanied by radiation of pain down the back of the thigh and leg and often to the feet. It must be noted that very few cases require surgery.


Occasionally, a single excessive strain may cause a slipped disc. However, disc material degenerates naturally as we age, and the ligaments that hold it in place begin to weaken. As this degeneration progresses, a relatively minor strain or twisting movement can cause a disc to pop out of place. Certain individuals may be more vulnerable to disc problems, and as a consequence may suffer herniations at several places along the spine. Research has shown that a predisposition for slipped discs may exist in families, with several members affected by such condition.

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