What is a Bulging Disc?
Bulging disc, also known as a disc protrusion, is a very common occurrence. This condition happens when a disc shifts out of its normal position, usually slowly and over a long period of time. As the disc moves, its inner, liquid-like nucleus begins to balloon toward the weakest point in its hard outer casing.
Usually, there is little or no pain associated with a bulging disc, but the affected disc may eventually suffer a herniation. Bulging discs may also place pressure on nearby nerves, leading to serious discomfort and, in some cases, severe and chronic pain.
Bulging Disc Symptoms
- A bulging disc in the cervical area may cause pain or tingle in the neck, shoulders, arms, hands or fingers. A bulging disc in the lumbar area may cause muscle spasms and lower back pain.
- Approximately 90% of all bulging discs occur in the lumbar spine.
- A thoracic bulging disc may cause pain in the upper back that radiates to the chest or stomach.