Bulging Disc Surgery

by Dr. David Kramer

With bulging discs being identified commonly on most MRI scans, it is important that you consider obtaining a second opinion to determine whether any bulging or herniated disc on your MRI can, in fact, explain the pattern of your pain.

 

Lumbar and cervical disc herniations are commonly referred to as “bulging discs.” In reality, bulging discs are a very common finding in most individuals over the age of 30. Our discs are like shock absorbers made out of cartilage. Cartilage, in turn, is comprised of approximately 80% water in terms of its herniated discmolecular makeup. Beyond the age of 30, the water content of our discs decreases, and the result is similar to letting the air out of a tire. In other words, the height of the disc may decrease and its periphery may bulge outward. This is commonly referred to a “bulging disc.” Many studies have demonstrated that the existence of a bulging disc is not necessarily associated with nerve compression, back pain, or leg pain. With bulging discs being identified commonly on most MRI scans, it is important that you consider obtaining a second opinion to determine whether any bulging or herniated disc on your MRI can, in fact, explain the pattern of your pain. Bulging disc surgery would include lumbar discectomy, whether it is performed through an endoscopic technique, or through a traditional open technique through a small 1 to 2-cm incision. Typically, the procedure involves a small incision overlying the area in your spine where the disc is herniated. The nerve being compressed by such a herniation is identified, protected, and retracted out of the way while microsurgical instruments are utilized to remove the bulging portion of the disc. Assuming the proper bulging disc is identified, a high likelihood of success from surgical decompression can be expected.

 

 

Dr. David Kramer

About Dr. David Kramer

Director of the Western Connecticut Health Network Spine Center since 2005, and with over 16 years in practice as a specialist in complex spinal surgery, Dr. Kramer conducts his spine practice at Connecticut Neck and Back Specialists in Danbury, Connecticut. He has been certified by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgeons since 1998. After earning his bachelors... Read More »