The vertebrae are cushioned by intervertebral discs which act as shock absorbers for the spine. The normal intervertebral disc is composed of a nucleus pulposus, at the center, surrounded by a fibrous ring known as annulus fibrosus. The nucleus pulposus is a soft-jelly like substance that is well hydrated and acts like a shock absorber. Herniated discs is a condition in which the outer fibrous annulus of the intervertebral disc is damaged, causing the soft gelatinous material to protrude from the center through the ruptured annulus. This results in nerve root and/or spinal canal compression. Herniated disc is also known as a bulging disc, slipped disc, or ruptured disc.
The most common signs of a herniated disk are:
Seek medical help if your neck or back pain travels down your arm or leg, or if you experience numbness, tingling, or weakness.