Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

Overview Incidence Symptoms Evaluation Treatment questions for doctor specialist Home Care back exercises pain and inflammation taking control using a cane warning signs Underlying Cause Anatomy

Herniated Intervertebral Disk Underlying Cause

A disk becomes herniated when the outer layer of the disk becomes weak. This allows the soft tissue that makes up the inside of the disk to push against the weakened outer layer. As a result, a bulge forms in the side of the disk: the bulge becomes more prominent when the disk is under stress during lifting, or twisting of the spine. In turn, this bulge can place pressure on the nerves in the spinal canal.

Causes of herniated disk include:

Continue to Herniated Intervertebral Disk Anatomy

Last Updated: Feb 2, 2011 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Herniated Intervertebral Disk References
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  2. 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. [10029785]
  3. Ito T, Takano Y, Yuasa N. Types of lumbar herniated disc and clinical course. Spine. 2001 Mar 15;26(6):648-51. [11246377]
  4. Spencer DL. The anatomical basis of sciatica secondary to herniated lumbar disc: a review. Neurol Res. 1999;21 Suppl 1:S33-6. [10214569]
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