Pressure on the nerve root (impingement)

Picture of normal disc compared to pressure on the nerve root (impingement) from a herniated disc

Illustration copyright 2000 by Nucleus Communications, Inc. All rights reserved. http://www.nucleusinc.com

Often a herniated disc by itself does not cause pain. Pain occurs when the membrane on the outside of the spinal cord or spinal nerves is irritated. Loss of function, such as weakness or altered sensation, can be caused by pressure from the herniated disc on the nerve roots or spinal cord. Pain or numbness may occur in the area of the body to which the nerve travels.

Last Updated: July 21, 2008

Medical Review: William M. Green, MD - Emergency Medicine & Robert B. Keller, MD - Orthopedics

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