Dr Garofalo's Blog

Cervical Herniated Disc- Disc Injuries and Chiropractic Care

Posted: March 24, 2015
By: Dr Jeffrey Garofalo

Developing a cervical herniated disc can be a very uncomfortable and stressful experience for a patient. Sometimes the resulting pain in the neck or back is excruciating. Chiropractic care is a non-surgical way of bringing relief for this condition.

Dr Garofalo with New Life Chiropractic in Bolingbrook, IL focuses on treating disorders arising from the musculoskeletal and nervous systems. Chiropractors use drug-free, hands-on treatments, recommend rehabilitative exercises and therapeutic activities, and provide advice on lifestyle and nutritional concerns.

What is a Cervical Herniated Disc?

Dr Garofalo a Chiropractor in Bolingbrook il The spine consists of two general areas. The cervical portion refers to the neck, while the lower back is called the lumbar spine. The spine consists of bones known as vertebrae. Seven vertebrae occur between the head and the chest and are known as the cervical spine.

Healthy discs cushion the vertebrae and keep the spine flexible. They work much like shock absorbers. A cervical herniated disc occurs when a disc in the cervical spine develops cracks or tears in its outer layer, allowing the jellylike material inside to escape. This can cause it to slip, bulge, rupture, or break into pieces.

The most common symptoms associated with a cervical herniated disc include:

  • Pain
  • Numbness
  • Weakness in the neck, chest, shoulders, arms, and hands
  • Tingling in other areas such as the legs

Herniated discs are usually the result of wear and tear. Aging causes discs to lose fluid and flexibility. Spinal injuries can also cause herniation. Some cervical herniated discs are the result of a combination of both degeneration and injury. Repetitive activities like lifting or even sitting at a computer for hours on end can boost the risk of disc injuries.

Chiropractic Treatment for Cervical Herniated Discs

The optimal outcome for this condition is relief through non-surgical means. For individuals in the Bolingbrook, IL area with signs of this problem, a visit to New Life Chiropractic is the first step toward diagnosis and relief of pain and other symptoms.

At an initial visit, the chiropractor will review a patient’s medical history, complete a physical examination, and perform neurological and orthopedic tests. The doctor will be specifically concerned about several things:

  • Whether reflexes are intact
  • If the patient shows signs of muscle strength loss or muscle wasting
  • Whether there is any loss of sensation along a nerve path

The chiropractor will also examine the patient’s posture. A diagnosis might require ordering X-rays or an MRI. A complete evaluation includes examining the entire spine even if discomfort appears to be in the lumbar portion. This is because occurrences in one section of the spine can exert an influence over other spinal areas or other parts of the body.

After making a diagnosis of a cervical herniated disc, a chiropractor will recommend a treatment plan tailored to the exact condition. This individualized course of treatment typically includes manual therapy and a therapeutic exercise regimen. Chiropractic treatment of these damaged discs consists of gentle, low-force treatments rather than forceful adjustments to “pop” a disc into place. In many cases, patients require more than a few fast treatments to obtain the best results.

New Life Chiropractic and Dr Garofalo, are located in Bolingbrook, Il while servicing the areas of Naperville, Plainfield and Romeoville.

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