What is a Bulging Disc?
A bulging disc refers to when the inner nucleus of a vertebral disc protrudes to it’s outer layer. Though similar, a bulging disc in the neck or back should not be confused with a Herniated Disc. Although herniated discs do share some of the same symptoms with a bulging disc, a vertebral disc is considered herniated only once the inner material of the disc actually breaks though its outer shell.
Causes of a Bulging Disc
A disc bulge may happen as a result of a great amount of pressure being placed on the disc, or if the disc has degenerated from age and other factors.
Bulging Disc Treatments
The treatment of a bulging disc depends on your symptoms. Most patients with a bulging disc do not need surgery. Your symptoms can usually be managed with conservative treatment such as watching and waiting to see whether your symptoms go away, pain medications, and physical therapy. Caution should be used when bending and twisting with bulging discs so that it does not progress into a herniated disc which is much more difficult to heal with conservative treatments.