Slipped Disk: Symptoms, Causes & Diagnosis

As the name indicates, a slipped disk is nothing but the slip/dislocation of the soft inner part of the spinal disk.


The spinal column generally resembles a few books stacked up. It is made up of a series of bones (vertebrae) stacked onto each other. From top to bottom, the column includes seven bones in the cervical spine, 12 in the thoracic spine, and five in the lumbar spine, followed by the sacrum and the coccyx at the base. These bones are cushioned by disks. The disks protect the bones by absorbing the shocks from daily activities like walking, lifting, and twisting.

Symptoms of a slipped disk

  • Pain and numbness, most commonly on one side of the body
  • Pain that extends to your arms or legs
  • Pain that worsens at night or with certain movements
  • Pain that worsens after standing or sitting
  • Pain when walking short distances
  • Unexplained muscle weakness
  • Tingling, aching, or burning sensations in the affected area

Slipped disks’ causes:

  • Aging
  • Heavy exercising
  • Overweight or being inactive
  • Lifting heavy objects in the wrong way
  • Vibration – from driving or operating machinery
  • Smoking – nicotine weakens the disc tissue

Slipped disks’ diagnosis:

  • X-rays
  • CT scans
  • MRI scans
  • Discograms

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