L5 disc split


Lower back pain, severe leg pain down my left leg and foot. Had an epidural done two days ago and waiting for relief. I know it will only last so long. What should I do next?

It depends rather on your philosophy of health; your medical doctor sees this as inflammation, hence the epidural.

As chiropractors we have a rather different view of a "split disc". At our slipped disc page you'll gain some understanding of what has actually happened; the central bubble of gel, known as the nucleus pulposis, has torn through the surrounding fibres of the annulus fibrosis and is bulging against the sciatic nerve.

In chiropractic we don't view this primarily as 'inflammation'; antiinflammatory steroids may help with the symptoms but actually impeded healing.

You might say in the say was as we wouldn't view torn ligaments, or even a fractured bone as inflammmation. What's needed in our view is that bubble of gel needs to be reduced, and then you have to stop long enough for the annular fibres to heal.
If you can't or won't stop, then that the offending disc will have to be surgically removed, and you'll be forced to stop for several months, and may end up with plates and screws in your back.

Watch our for weakness in the leg developing; can you raise your big toe and lift your heel off the ground without strain?

In the short term read our slipped disc rules page; ice, exercise, no sitting, no bending, and get that disc reduced by a skilled chiropractor.

Good luck. Let me know how you get on.

Dr B

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