Pain Type: Your spine is made up of vertebrae that are separated by discs which give cushion between the bones. These discs have a soft center that grows tougher towards the exterior. A disc becomes herniated when a crack is formed in the exterior of the disc and the inner core bulges or ruptures out through the weak area in the exterior. The soft spot in the center is located directly under the spinal nerve root, so when the disc becomes herniated, direct pressure on the nerve root can cause pain.
Symptoms: You may have a herniated disc and not even know it! However, the most common occurrence of a herniated disc is in your lower back, and can be located in other areas. Symptoms include: pain in the buttocks and the leg (herniated disc of the lower back), shoulder and arm pain (herniated disc of the neck), numbness and tingling (the area affected will differ based on which disc the nerve is affecting).
Treatment: Narcotic pain medications
Non-narcotic pain medications
Epidural Steroid Injections – When receiving an epidural injection for a herniated disc, an injection is made in the dura space of the spine. This injection will not decrease the size of a herniated disc, but affects the spinal nerve root reducing inflammation and in turn reducing pain. A combination of medication and/or anesthetic is injected with the use of fluoroscopy.