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Am I suffering from a herniated disc?
Am I suffering from a herniated disc?

Herniated discs most commonly occur in the lower back region (lumbar spine herniations) or neck region (cervical spine herniations), but they are far less common in the upper back region (thoracic spine herniations). (Mayo Clinic) Herniated discs can be very painful, but often times, patients with herniated discs are unaware of their condition. There are certain symptoms to be aware of that may indicate whether you’re suffering from a herniated disc.

Weakness or pain in your toes

Herniated discs in your fourth and fifth lumbar segments (L4 and L5) can cause nerve impingement that may make it difficult to raise your big toe. If the herniation occurs between your fifth lumbar segment and first sacral segments (L5 and S1, respectively), you may experience difficulty or even pain standing on your toes.

Leg Pain

Leg pain, or “sciatica” as it’s sometimes called, can be the leading sign of a herniated disc. Research shows that “approximately 90% of herniated discs occur at L4-L5 and L5-S1, causing pain in the L5 or S1 nerve that radiates down the sciatic nerve.” (Spine Health) If you have a herniated disc in your lower back (lumbar spine herniation), you may feel intense pain in your thighs, calves, and buttocks.

Arm Pain

A cervical disc herniation (neck region) can cause weakness throughout your shoulders and arms. Varying areas of pain throughout your cervical segments (C4-C10) can manifest pain at different places throughout your shoulders and arms.

If you believe you’ve experienced a herniated disc, do not attempt any heavy lifting or extensive lumbar stretching without consulting with our board-certified physicians here at Orthopedic Associates. Our very own Dr. Keith Wilkey is one of St. Louis’ leading orthopedic surgeons and relies on both surgical and non-surgical treatment solutions to provide you the best possible care for your spine.

Connect with a member of our Orthopedic Associates team by scheduling your next appointment today.






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