Herniated and Bulging Discs
Disc injuries are a painful type of spinal injury that can be caused by any number of physical traumas. A vehicle accident or a slip and fall accident can cause a herniated disc or a bulging disc. This occurs when one of the discs in a person’s spinal column in the back or neck area, which acts as cushions between vertebrae, is damaged. This injury may result in a herniated disc, which occurs when a crack in the tough outer layer of cartilage surrounding the disc allows some of the softer inner cartilage to protrude out of the disc and into a nerve. An injury may also cause a disc to bulge outside the space it should normally occupy. If you have been involved in an accident that caused a disc injury in Broward, Miami-Dade, Palm Beach or any other county in Florida, you should consult with a personal injury attorney in Fort Lauderdale at Englander Peebles.
These injuries, like any kind of spinal injury, can potentially cause substantial pain that radiates throughout the body, especially into a person’s extremities. The pain can last for a long time, even for a lifetime. They can also cause numbness or tingling in the part of the body connected to the pinched nerves, and may cause certain muscles to weaken. Diagnosis is not always immediate as these disc injuries do not generally appear on initial x-rays and require CT and MRI scans to be detected.
Treatment for Herniated or Bulging Discs
The range of treatment options for herniated or bulging discs can include medications, therapy or surgery. Medications available are usually to help patients with pain. This may include over-the counter pain medications and narcotics. However, disc injuries directly affect nerves and may require directed prescription nerve pain medicine and muscle relaxers. More severe pain may even require epidural and other types of injections directly into the area around the spinal nerves to suppress inflammation.
Physical therapists may assist with long-term options to help minimize the pain caused by a disc injury. This may include weekly appointments for exercises, in addition to electrical stimulation and short-term bracing.
Finally, some people may require surgery if other treatments fail to improve symptoms. This may be the only option for those who experience progressive numbness or weakness, difficulty standing or walking, and are losing bladder or bowel control. A surgeon may attempt to remove the herniated or bulging portion of the disc. In the most severe cases, a surgeon may have to remove the disc and either fuse the vertebrae together with metal hardware or implant an artificial disc.
A herniated or bulging disc can be a serious injury that has life-long consequences for those affected. It can also be very expensive, not only because of diagnostic and treatment costs, but also for possible lost time at work and decreased quality of life. If you have been injured in an accident in Fort Lauderdale, Weston, Plantation, or any other city in Florida and have herniated and/or bulging discs, Englander Peebles can assist you in obtaining compensation for your injuries. Do not wait to contact us for a free initial consultation – the earlier we can help you with your case, the better. You can submit our online form or contact our Fort Lauderdale office today by calling (954) 519-4048.