When you are suffering from severe back pain, you may find yourself somewhat relieved to finally learn that the pain is a result of herniated discs in your spine. Once you have a diagnosis, after all, you will be able to come up with a treatment plan to overcome the condition. However, if you have never had herniated discs before, you may wonder what treatment options are available to you to help you overcome the condition. Get to know some of these treatment options so that you can get your back in working order as quickly as possible.
Many physicians will try to help you overcome your herniated discs through non-surgical means if possible before moving on to spinal surgery. There are, however, some cases in which the discs are so far displaced that surgery is the only option. Assuming you are not one of those cases, your doctor may have you try physical therapy to reduce your pain and treat your disc herniation.
Physical therapy involves doing certain strength exercises, stretches, and cardiovascular work to try to get your back to heal itself and reduce your experience of pain in the meantime. Your focus will be mainly on pain management and on relieving pressure on any affected nerves in the process. Physical therapy often involves both sessions with your therapist and work that you do at home on your own.
Chiropractic care is another treatment option for herniated discs that may be effective at relieving your back pain and even in healing your herniated discs. The treatment chiropractors offer known as spinal manipulation can be put to use to stretch out and lengthen your spine.
These treatments can allow the disc that has become displaced to move back into place. Stretching the spine in this way can also relieve your pain by freeing up pinched nerves and allowing your nervous system to work properly.
Surgery is another treatment option for herniated discs. If possible, your spine surgeon will try to perform what is known as an arthroscopic surgery. This means that the surgery would be minimally invasive and would only require a small incision.
In an arthroscopic surgery, the surgeon will make a small incision and insert a device known as an arthroscope (also sometimes referred to as an endoscope) into the area. This scope allows the surgeon to see the affected discs and to repair or remove them without making a large incision.
However, sometimes a more invasive spine surgery is required. This occurs when several discs are causing problems or the doctor needs to perform spinal fusion or other procedures to stabilize the spine while they are operating on your herniated discs. The more complicated the procedure, the more likely a larger incision will be required.
Now that you know a bit more about treating your herniated discs, you can be sure that you are prepared for the treatments to come. Contact a business such as Framingham Orthopedic Associates for more information.