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Disc Degeneration, Bulges and Herniation


The spinal disc acts as a strong elastic pivot for each joint segment of the spine, providing stability and allowing a relatively wide range of motion in all directions in the lower back and neck. When a disc starts to lose its strength and flexibility, it can cause a range of painful and potentially debilitating symptoms, or even no symptoms at all.

Degenerative Disc Disease: 

Degenerative Disc Disease is a general term for the condition in which a damaged vertebral disc causes chronic pain in the lumbar spine or neck.  Without a blood supply the disc does not have a way to repair itself, and pain created by the damaged disc can last for years, either as a chronic condition or with periodic painful flare ups.


  • Increased pain with activities that involve bending or twisting the spine, as well as lifting heavy objects

  • Spinal instability or “giving out” sensation

    • the neck or back feels as if it is unable to provide basic support, and may lock up and make the movement feel difficult

  • Muscle tension/ muscle spasms

    • Common effects of spinal instability is when a degenerated disc may cause no pain however, muscle spasms can be severely painful and temporarily debilitating

  • Possible radiating pain

  • Increased pain when holding certain positions, such as sitting or standing for extended periods (exacerbating low back pain)

  • The amount of pain is variable between individuals and can range from no pain to nagging and severe pain. 

Herniated Disc: 

  • A herniated disc is a condition in which the annulus fibrosus (outer portion) of the vertebral disc is torn, enabling the nucleus (inner portion) to herniate or extrude through the fibers. 

  • The herniated material can compress the nerves around the disc and create pain that can radiate through the back and sometimes down the arms (if the herniation is in the cervical spine) and legs (if the herniation is in the lumbar spine). 

  • Pain and other symptoms from a herniated disc can usually be treated successfully with medication and nonsurgical options including chiropractic manipulation. 


  • Cervical Herniated Disc 

    • Neck pain towards the back or side of neck (tender or sharp burning pain). 

    • Electric-like shock down neck through shoulder, arm, hand and/or fingers from pinched nerve 

    • Numbness/weakness radiating through shoulder, arm, hand and/or fingers through nerve root inflammation or pinched nerve. 

  • Thoracic Herniated Disc

    • Upper back pain through a disc protrusion putting pressure on the spinal cord.

    • Radiating chest wall or abdominal pain from impinging nerve root. 

  • Lumbar Herniated Disc

    • Leg pain can be worse than lower back pain if it radiates along the path of the large sciatic nerve 

    • Nerve pain is described as a sharp, electric, radiating or piercing sensation. 

    • Neurological symptoms such as numbness, pins and needles, weakness, tingling may be experienced in the leg, foot, and/or toes. 

    • Foot drop, with difficulty lifting the foot when walking or standing on the ball of the foot.

Before & After X-Rays: 

improvement of disc degeneration

Pre Mirror-Image Spinal Traction & Adjustments 

disc space narrowing

Post Mirror-Image Spinal Traction & Adjustments 

improved disc space

Want to Discover if your Symptoms could be from Disc Problems?
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