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the 'pinched nerve' & 'disc herniations"

The lumbar intervertebral disc is divided into 2 parts: (1) an inner nucleus pulposus and (2) an outer annulus fibrosus. The annulus fibrosus fibers intercross forming a strong resistance to rotational forces, and the nucleus acts as a ball bearing in terms of the vertebra tilting forward or backward on. Between two vertebrae and the intervertebral disc is the intervertebral foramen whereby the spinal nerves exit. On the inner aspect of the vertebra is the vertebral canal where the spinal cord runs.

The most common cause for a true “pinched nerve” is a disc herniation. A herniated disc is sometimes, although not accurately, called a slipped disc, and is a cause of severe back pain and sciatica. A disc “herniates” when the annulus fibres become damaged. It can be either contained (the annulus fibres remain intact) or not contained (outer annulus failure allows prolapse into the vertebral canal). When there is a subluxation present causing the disc damage, it causes a local inflammatory response, which will put pressure onto the nerve exiting the intervertebral foramen, and if not contained, it can put added pressure on the inner vertebral canal and nerve roots.

Special testing such as CT scans or MRI’s are recommended to assess the severity of the disc disorder, and can be very helpful in determining the best treatment plan.

Your Doctor of Chiropractic is very proficient in analyzing and managing a disc herniation with great success.

For information on nutritional support whilst healing from a disc herniation, please ask your Chiropractor or Chiropractic Assistant (CA) for our Guide to Nutritional Supplements.

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