Patients suffering from diseases of the spine, wonder what is dangerous intervertebral hernia, what consequences can the disease. To answer it, it is important to understand why a hernia is forming, and what complications will arise in different parts of the spine, if not to take timely measures.
How and why hernia develops
Intervertebral hernia disease the consequences of which can indeed be very dangerous, in most cases a rather long period is formed. The essence of pathology is the destruction of the so-called intervertebral discs.
They consist of two parts:
- Heleous pulpous nucleus.
- Solid fibrous ring.
The disc separates every 2 adjacent spines and provides elasticity, resilience of the spine, due to which a person can perform various movements. If the vertebral bones, gradually moving, squeeze the disc, then the central part presses on its ring. As a result, the ring begins to gradually break down, and the substance of the nucleus goes out of limits and squeezes the nerve fibers (parts of the radicular nerves). Therefore, intervertebral hernia is almost always accompanied by severe pain.
Thus, the question of what a vertebral hernia is can be said: it is the complete destruction of the fibrous ring, as a result of which the contents of the disk squeeze the nerve fibers.
There may be several reasons for this pathology, and they are combined into 2 large groups:
- Traumatic impact (falling on the back, hitting, sprains, accidents, sports injuries).
- Long-developing pathological processes of bone destruction (for example, osteochondrosis).
Can burst hernia
Another frequently asked question is whether an intervertebral hernia can burst. It is important to understand the concepts. Hernia – this is the result of the destruction of the disk. That is, if it was formed, it means that the disk has already partially collapsed, and its remnants squeeze the nerve fibers in the spinal cord. This is precisely the pathology that is dangerous, because the spinal cord is a vital organ that provides sensitivity in the limbs, impulses to the brain, and some reflexes.
The following factors can provoke a rupture of the disc with hernia of the spine and worsen the condition of the intervertebral disc:
- falling from height on the back, especially in an uncomfortable position;
- bounce into any area of the back in case of an accident, fight or during sports activities;
- complications during pregnancy and childbirth – strong loads with hernia of the spine can really lead to the complete rupture of the fibrous ring.
How to determine that a hernia has burst
If there is a problem with the back for a long time, and no treatment measures have been taken, then with a hernia of the spine there is a sharp increase in the risk that the disc will burst.
It is impossible not to notice such a trauma, since it is always accompanied by pronounced symptoms:
- sharp, burning, often unbearable pains, which can even lead to painful shock;
- leg numbness or even paralysis of the lower limbs;
- severe swelling, swelling of the damaged area;
- bulging of the corresponding part of the spine.
Particularly dangerous and at the same time the most common hernia of the lumbar spine, symptoms of which are contraindicated have their own characteristics. There are pains in the lower back and other areas of the back, often they give around the spine and even in the limbs. Therefore, it is unacceptable to allow the development of a lumbar hernia – it is much better to consult a doctor in advance in order not to bring the case to severe pain and surgery.
What complications does the disease cause?
Hernia in the back, like other types of intervertebral hernia, almost always lead to complications. Consequences may be associated with the back, as well as with other internal organs, since the disruption of the spinal cord will inevitably affect them. At the same time, the peculiarities of complications are related to which area of the back is affected by the disease. Thus, intervertebral hernia of the lumbar spine often leads to numbness and even paralysis of the legs, and the effects of the vertebral hernia of the cervical region are associated with headaches.
Complications of cervical disease
Despite the fact that the pathology rarely affects the neck, the effects of intervertebral hernia here can be particularly severe (in advanced cases, up to stroke and death). The danger is related to the fact that the vertebral artery, which provides up to 20% of brain tissue with blood, runs alongside the cervical vertebrae. Therefore, when the disk begins to put pressure on this blood vessel, the blood supply worsens.
As a result, the following symptoms are often observed:
- dizziness, headaches;
- unexplained spikes in blood pressure;
- violation of cognitive processes – deterioration of concentration, attention, memory, perception;
- general lethargy, reduced tone;
- aching pains in the neck and in the whole spine; as a rule, pains are aggravated by turning the neck.
Complications of lumbar disease
The most frequently asked questions are about the danger of lumbar hernia. As a rule, this pathology can significantly affect the patient’s health. The main risk is that the innervation (conduction of nerve impulses) of the leg muscles is disturbed. As a result, the victim often feels numbness, loss of sensation. If the disc bursts, it can even lead to paralysis.
That is why the consequences of vertebral hernia and the complications associated with foot pathology are dangerous. With prolonged lying in bed, sedentary lifestyle, leg muscles gradually atrophy. This leads to painful contractions (spasms) of the muscles – the so-called tonic syndrome. Swelling increases due to the lack of movement, which only increases the pain and leads to spasms.
Complications of the sacral disease
In the sacral region, pathology develops less frequently, however, it is worth considering also what the hernia of the spine of this part is dangerous for.
Since the damaged nerve fibers supply the legs, the following are observed:
- severe pain in the corresponding area of the back;
- numbness of the skin of the legs;
- pains in the buttocks, thighs and legs;
- menstrual disorders in women;
- sometimes these pathologies can even lead to infertility in women;
- wicking and paralysis of muscle tissue.
Therefore, in this case, the patient revealed many contraindications for hernia. As a rule, you cannot lift heavy objects, stand on your feet for a long time, stay in an unheated room or on the street.
Consequences of Schmorl’s hernia
If the disorder is related to the failure of cartilage in the bone inside the body of the upper vertebra or the lower vertebra, it is called Schmorl’s hernia by the name of the discoverer. Very often, such a pathology is inherited or begins to develop right in childhood. However, in such cases, the question of how dangerous the intervertebral hernia is, occurs less frequently, because this pathology does not lead to such serious complications as were described above.
As a rule, contraindications for hernia of this type are insignificant, and even treatment in many cases is not required. If contraindications for intervertebral hernia of the lumbar spine are serious enough, in this case, they can only be reduced to a small limitation of loads on the back and to the exclusion of some sports.
Treatment of the disease
If a hernia of the lumbar spine or other parts of the spine is found, not all cases of surgery are prescribed.
Medical practice shows that in the early stages of the development of pathology, it is enough to apply conservative treatment:
- medications (painkillers, regenerating tissues, relieving puffiness and suppressing inflammatory processes);
- physiotherapeutic procedures for quick recovery of damaged areas and improved blood supply;
- massage, manual therapy;
- maintaining a diet rich in calcium and substances that contribute to its absorption.
In order for hernia contraindications not to become so noticeable, the disease should be treated as soon as possible. To do this, always undergo an examination, and then strictly follow the recommendations of the doctor. As a rule, therapeutic exercises are one of the measures of therapy. Most of them can be performed at home – these are the most common tricks (the position is always lying on your back on a hard surface).