Bulging and Herniated Discs: One of the Most Common Types of Automobile Accident Injuries

Bulging discs and herniated discs are among the most common injuries suffered by victims of automobile collisions and other accidents. A bulging or herniated disc occurs where physical trauma causes the displacement of a disc—the tissue in the spinal column that acts as a cushion for the vertebrae—in the victim’s neck or back, thereby causing the disc to protrude or leak into the spinal column. Although the terms are often used interchangeably, a bulging disc is technically distinct from a herniated disc. A bulging disc refers to a disc that protrudes outward beyond its normal circumference within the vertebral column by more than 25%, but which has not yet sustained a tear or rupture. By contrast, a herniated disc occurs when the soft inner layer of the disc is displayed, thereby causing a tear or rupture to the outer layer of the disc and the gel-like inner layer to leak into the spinal canal. A herniated disc may start out as a bulged disc, and subsequently become herniated when pressure causes the disc to tear or rupture.

A herniated or bulging disc can be painful and debilitating, but a disc may be herniated or bulging even in the absence of pain. A computerized tomography (CT) scan or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) may be necessary to determine whether the disc is herniated. The pain caused by a bulging or herniated disc may affect either a portion of or the entire back, or it may affect one or both legs or feet.  The pain may be accompanied by numbness or a tingling sensation. Other symptoms may include muscle weakness or paralysis. The condition may be treated with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory pain drugs (NSAIDs) or an epidural corticosteroid injection. Sometimes, surgery may be required to repair the damaged disc.

 

At Torero Law, our herniated and bulging disc attorneys excel at securing compensation and medical treatment for accident victims struggling with disc injuries. If you have been injured in an accident and are experiencing back pain, numbness, or tingling, call us so that we can evaluate your case and help you recover compensation for your injuries.

 

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