If you were recently diagnosed with a disc protrusion, there are many nonsurgical treatment options available that can provide you with the pain relief needed to enjoy regular activities. In fact, many people with disc protrusions and other degenerative spine conditions respond well to a course of conservative techniques. As you seek treatment, it is important to visit a doctor to correctly diagnose the issue and determine the best possible approach to treatment. The symptoms of a disc protrusion, like chronic, local pain and other similar discomfort, can also be caused by several other conditions. Effective treatment generally requires a positive diagnosis of where your pain is coming from, how significant your spinal deterioration is and what caused the issue in the first place.
While the specific nonsurgical treatment options that are recommended to patients vary widely based on factors like the location and severity of the condition and the patient’s medical history, there are methods that are commonly recommended. These include:
- Low-impact exercises. Swimming, jogging and other low-impact workouts can help reduce excess body fat, strengthen the spine and have long-term benefits to your overall health.
- The use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Anti-inflammatories, both over-the-counter and prescription, can help reduce the swelling that often accompanies swollen discs. Muscle relaxers may also be recommended to reduce strain.
- Hot/cold compresses. The use of heat can improve circulation and promote healing while ice packs reduce swelling and relieve pain.
- Limited rest. While you won’t want to become sedentary, taking it easy for periods of time to let your body recover is usually recommended.
- Lifestyle adjustments. Shedding excess body fat, limiting alcohol and tobacco intake and improving your posture can all help relieve the symptoms of disc protrusion.
Of course, these are just a handful of examples of nonsurgical treatments that are often recommended for disc protrusions. There are many other different methods that can be explored over the course of several weeks or months as you work with your doctor to address your disc pain.
When to consider ruptured disc surgery
In cases where nonsurgical treatment options for your disc protrusion prove ineffective, surgery might be considered. At USA Spine Care, we’re the leader in minimally invasive spine surgery that is a safer and effective alternative to traditional open spine surgery.^ Our surgeons can access the spine with a less than 1-inch incision, allowing conditions like ruptured discs to be treated on an outpatient basis. To learn more about our streamlined outpatient procedures, contact us today.
We’re happy to provide a free MRI review* to determine if you are a potential candidate for one of our procedures.
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