Herniated Disk Evaluation
The evaluation of a herniated disk begins with a history and physical examination.
Physical findings in someone with a herniated disk may include:
- Abnormal reflexes
- Back tenderness
- Numbness and tingling:
- On the skin of the back or buttocks
- Leg weakness (unilateral)
- Leg numbness (unilateral)
- Arm weakness (unilateral)
- Arm numbness (unilateral)
- Back pain or neck pain:
- Worsens with movement of the spine
Testing is usually required to confirm the diagnosis of a herniated disk.
Tests that may be used to evaluate a herniated disk include:
Continue to Herniated Disk Treatment
- Barrett PH, Beck A, Schmid K, Fireman B, Brown JB. Treatment decisions about lumbar herniated disk in a shared decision-making program. Jt Comm J Qual Improv. 2002 May;28(5):211-9. 
- Humphreys SC, Eck JC. Clinical evaluation and treatment options for herniated lumbar disc. Am Fam Physician. 1999 Feb 1;59(3):575-82, 587-8. 
- Ito T, Takano Y, Yuasa N. Types of lumbar herniated disc and clinical course. Spine. 2001 Mar 15;26(6):648-51. 
- Spencer DL. The anatomical basis of sciatica secondary to herniated lumbar disc: a review. Neurol Res. 1999;21 Suppl 1:S33-6.