Chiropractor Questions Herniated Disk

What happens if you let a herniated disc go untreated?

I am a 38 year old male with a herniated disc. I do not have enough time to take care of it. What happens if you let a herniated disc go untreated?

11 Answers

It all depends on how bad the herniation is (both in size, and on its creation of problematic symptoms) and what the rest of the native disc looks like (such as, is it badly collapsed). One must take care of his back, especially if is injured with avoiding stress on the spine and rehabilitating the supporting elements through stretching and strengthening. As long as are there are no hard neurological deficits, like weakness, and you can tolerate the pain, things should improve with time. You can speed up the recovery with rehabilitation as noted.
There are different types of disc herniations - some that require surgery and some that can be managed without surgery. Your treating neurosurgeon would be the best person to answer your question based on your clinical and radiographic findings
More than likely it will get worse over time creating more pain, numbness, and possibly weakness of your limb. It will also tend to lead to degeneration of your spine and the areas of your spine around that disc issue.
The disc can either get worse or it will get better in about 3 months.
Treatment for a disc herniation can vary based on the effect on the spinal cord or on the spinal roots that are affected by the herniation. In general neurologic problems such as numbness, weakness, balance, tone or bladder problems need to be monitored if present
It can go either way depending on activity and the severity of the herniation. Some research studies have shown that approximately 40% of mild disc herniations with little or no symptoms will resolve themselves using anti-inflammatory medication, applications of ice packs, mild exercise such as walking and refraining from strenuous activity.

On the other hand, if symptoms persist and worsen you need to make time because this can lead to nerve damage and possible surgery, and that will lead to a lot more lost time than it takes to treat it.

Good luck,

The disc will swell, inflame, release cytokines in to the body which trigger white blood cells to come to the area's aid.

I suppose theoretically if you could tough it out long enough the body could eat away the damaged tissue and scar over the damaged area.

I know it seems like you don't have time but nearly every time one of these is left untreated it will degenerate over time and cause worse issues in the future.

The whole area can degenerate and the whole disc can disappear over time...very painful and lots of symptoms, usually.

Go have a chiropractor at least re-align the bones in that area!

Eventually an untreated disc herniation will cause neurological related organ symptoms such as Constipation to Erectile Dysfunction. However, with this being said, everyone is different. Let’s pray your body heals more efficiently.
Change the computer position several times to find the right position.
Sometimes it will calm down and let you live your life normally. Sometimes it will get worse to where you cannot ignore it, or it causes your leg muscles to atrophy, loss of feeling in the legs, etc. It can also get so bad that surgery is necessary. I would recommend taking care of this now. I have patients who waited too long and now they can barely walk. You can take care of this in less than 15 minutes per day.
If a herniated disc goes untreated for long enough, it can cause damage to the nerves that it's pushing on. If those nerves become damaged, you can experience muscle atrophy, numbness, tingling and eventually disability or loss of use of the areas that that disc innervates.