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Home :: Back, Ruptured Disk

Back, Ruptured Disk

Alternative names :- Herniated Disk, Slipped Disk, Herniated Nucleus Pulposus

Sudden or gradual break in the spine. The supportive ligaments surrounding a spinal disk (a cushion separating bony spinal vertebrae).


Disks of the neck or lower spine are the most common sites especially between the 4th and 5th lumbar vertebrae.


Weakening and rupture of the disk material, creating pressure on nearby spinal nerves. Rupture of the disk is caused by sudden injury or chronic stress, such as from constant lifting or obesity.

Signs & Symptoms

In the lower back:

  • Severe pain in the low back or in the back of one leg, buttock or foot (sciatica). Pain usually affects one side and woresens with movement, coughing, sneezing, lifting or staining.
  • Weakness, numbness or muscular wasting of affected leg.

In the neck

  • Pain in the neck , shoulder or down one arm pain worsens with movement.
  • Weakness, numbness or muscular wasting of affected arm.


Follow your doctor's instructions. These instructions are supplemental.

Apply ice packs to the painful area during the first 72 hours and occasionally thereafter, if they provide relief. Alternately, try to relieve pain with a heat lamp, hot showers, hot baths, warm compresses or a heating pad.

Home Diet

No special diet. Increase consumption of dietary fiber and drink at least 8 glasses of fluid a day to prevent constipation or fecal impaction due to decreased physical activity during treatment.

  • Practice proper posture when lifting.
  • Exercise regularly to maintain good muscle tone.
  • If previously injured, avoid any vigorous physical activity that requires twisting of the body under uncontrollable conditions.

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