How do you know if you have a herniated disc?

San Francisco Herniated Disc Specialist Comments:

Herniated disc treatment san francisco Often times back pain patients are concerned that they may have a herniated or slipped disc in their back or neck…especially if there was a trauma involved…how would they know?

Well…if you have pain radiating down your arm or leg (sciatica) you should be concerned. If it hurts when you cough, laugh, or sneeze, you may have a disc herniation. Or, if you have loss of grip strength, arm or leg weakness…or foot drop, you could have a lumbar or cervical disc bulge or herniation.

A herniated disc can also cause numbness or tingling in the extremities, as well as hot or cold sensations…or just abnormal sensations.

Your nerves transmit sensory and motor input to and from the brain. Herniated or bulging discs put physical pressure on the nerves and can cause loss of sensation and motor function.

Sure, a herniated disc can happen all at once from a trauma. But what's more likely to happen is a disc herniation from long term wear and tear from spinal degeneration and misalignment's. Just like a tire can blow if it hits a curb…or it can blow from driving too hard over time with the front end out of alignment.

And get this…you may or may not have any neck or back pain with a disc herniation.

Actually…you could have a disc herniation and not even know it. In fact, most people that have disc herniations never even develop signs or symptoms. That's right…only a small percentage of people that suffer disc herniations ever even know they have them. This is because not all herniated cervical or lumbar discs cause symptoms or loss of function.

However…of the herniated disc patients that do develop symptoms such as back pain, sciatica, numbness, tingling, or weakness…some of them become  chronic and severe…some severely disabled.

So, knowing if you have a disc herniation is very difficult. Because even all the signs and symptoms I described above can be caused by other things, especially after acute trauma.

The gold standard for confirming the presence of a disc herniation in the spine is MRI.

If it turns out you have a herniated disc in your back there are surgical and non-surgical options. 

Chiropractic care is probably your best natural solution…then non-surgical spinal decompression…or a combination of both. You may or may not need medical care…it just depends on the nature and severity of your condition.

Most of the patients we treat at our San Francisco Chiropractic and Spinal Decompression Center have already tried medical care for their disc herniations. They are looking for a more natural solution. 

Chiropractic adjustments, disc decompression therapy, massage, exercise, and deep tissue laser is a potent disc herniation treatment combination.

Some herniated disc specialists include physical medicine, acupuncture, and nutrition therapy into their herniated disc treatment regimens.

The best thing to do if you have any of the signs and symptoms of a herniated disc is find a chiropractor that offers spinal decompression therapy. Do your homework on-line. You can also email me at or check our list of Recommended Chiropractors.

If you live or work near downtown San Francisco you can visit our San Francisco Spinal Decompression Clinic at the Embarcadero Center in the Financial District. Call 415-392-2225 to schedule an appointment. We validate parking. Ask for a complimentary consultation.

Directions to our SF Chiropractic and Spinal Decompression Center

Eben Davis

I am a Chiropractor in the San Francisco Financial District specializing in chronic neck, arm and hand pain. I also treat herniated discs using spinal decompression, whiplash, sports injuries, headaches, and Fibromyalgia. My clinic is certified in the use of Deep Tissue Laser Therapy with the LiteCure LCT-1000 for conditions such as shoulder pain, TMJ and Plantar Fasciitis. I have been in practice for over 20 years.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInGoogle PlusYouTube

0 thoughts on “How do you know if you have a herniated disc?

  1. Dr. David Livingston

    Many people who do have a confirmed herniated disc, often do not seek treatment or stop treatment when the pain reduces; erroneously thinking that the problem is gone. Conversley, the problem continues and often leads to greater problems.
    If you have a disc problem, or think that you might have one, visit Dr. Davis and let him determine the best course of action….your decision will of course determine the ultimate course of action.

  2. Dieter

    This kind of info is vital. I once thought i had an issue with my back because i couldn’t sit upright, but it turned out to be something completely different. It was a severe spasm in my low back. But as always, best tip is to seek medical attention when something is up. Or chiropractic in San Francisco. See you next time again. Thanks!

  3. Ellen

    Conditions like these herniated discs are killers. People who have them need to seek out treatments. My father suffered permanent disability from this. I wish he would have seen your chiropractic clinic in San Francisco a long time ago. Thanks for sending me info.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>