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Herniated Disc, does it ever heal

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:39 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I had severe back pain one morning 3 years ago. A MRI showed that I had a herniated disc. My doctor prescribed 10 therapy sessions. I am 54 years old. I am in very good physical shape, exercise regularly, and I haven't had any back pain since. Is it at all possible, if I had another MRI today, that it would show that my disc is no longer herniated?
Thank you very much for your help!


  • Howdy!

    It is not unheard of for a herniated disk to "dry up, shrink, go away" with conservative treatment. It sounds like you might be one of the lucky ones! There are some on here that have had MRI #1 show a herniation, with possible surgery, to go through various treatments, bing, MRI #2, hernia reduced or all but gone, surgery, off the list now! As a surgical spiney, I truly hope you are "non surgical" candidate now due to hernia dry up! :-)


    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • I have three disc gone in my lower back , the pain in my back never goes away, nor does the nerve pain down my left leg the right leg comes and goes .

    Will fusion surgery help ?
  • tiredrob said:
    I have three disc gone in my lower back , the pain in my back never goes away, nor does the nerve pain down my left leg the right leg comes and goes .

    Will fusion surgery help ?
    Hi Rob,

    Welcome to Spine Health!!! Surgery? I can't answer that for you as I am not a doctor, nor can I even if I were, as it is one of those very internal decisions.

    I will ask this though. Have you had any recent imaging done, and too a doctor that specializes in spinal issues? The disk does cause a LOT of our issues, but you will see that many of us too have what are called "Osteophytes" (bone spurs), narrowing of the central canal, foreman etc., all of which can cause nerve pain. You may have something like that going on. I wouldn't even if I were you think of putting fusion (or any surgery) on your "mental table" until you have a proper exam and such. No need to get nervous if it isn't needed.

    Some folks get a zillion percent better with shots, PT, medication etc. Others like me, it didn't work and surgery was the only option - short of continuing with the pain and degeneration. That will be between you and your surgeon should it come to that. I only know of what they do for lower backs with what I read on here. I read them because I am probably heading down that path too...but still hoping I don't. Please let us know what you do. Good luck!!


    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • If the pain is gone for you most likely the herniated disc is gone. Although, many people have had herniated discs and have had no pain. I had L5-S1 herniation with an annular tear and disc material in contact with the L5 exiting nerve and have had debilitation unable to work pain for 21 months now. My MRI in September showed no herniated disc but mild Degenerative Disc Disease and still have pain from that though. Take care of yourself. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • had the mri 4 months phys. therapy injection in lower back,
    did not help physical therapy helped some and hurt some .
    my dr. seems on the fence ,but is scheduling surg. the ins. turned it down once saying 3 level fusion out come to risky, (but two level fusion for some helps makes no sense to me)

    I have to do something taking pain pills only works when I
    take double and drink , so I stopped that hate being lathargic

    Trying to find better pain management .
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