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Protrusive disc disease - Definition


Disc disease affects the spine and is due to the degeneration of the discs between the vertebrae. It is called protrusive disc disease when it is accompanied by a projection of the disks. It is commonly known as disc herniation. It may be generalized over the entire spine, but is most often found in the lumbar region, in the lower back. It is often responsible for pain in the affected vertebrae, but can also irritate a nerve that passes nearby and generate pain in the areas related to the affected nerve: this is the case in sciatica where the pain descends the length of the leg. The main treatment involves rest, painkillers, or anti-inflammatories. If the hernia doesn't improve, surgery is sometimes considered.