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Suffering from slip disc in L3-L4 and back pain. What treatment should be done?

Feb 2014
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Orthopaedic Surgeon, Joint Replacement
Practicing since : 2004
Answered : 5931 Questions
My mother is suffering from slip disc in L3-L4. She has been suffering from it for the past 1 year and has continuous pain in the back. What treatment should we try/
Posted Tue, 7 May 2013 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Saurabh Gupta 5 hours later
Hello XXXXXXX and Welcome to XXXXXXX
Thanks for writing to us.

Your mother having slip disc at L3-L4 level. This disc may be compressing upon a nerve root that either exits or traverses through that level. Having known this basic anatomy, she must avoid any activity that aggravates the condition, like bending forward and lifting heavy objects, sitting long hours , inappropriate sitting posture, etc.

There are several treatment modalities with medicines, physiotherapy and with injections in the back called epidural injections and root/facet blocks.

For this condition I suggest her to do stretching & strengthening exercises of back in which she has to stretch tight muscle & strengthen weakened ones which will alleviate stress on facet joint and disc.Kindly note that exercises should only be done when it doesn't hurt. Adequate rest and proper nutrition is equally important. Drink lots of fluids since dehydration affects the disc.

If she don't get better with these treatment , another option is surgery, by which the nerves are decompressed by removing the protruded disc (discectomy), which would significantly improve her symptoms.

Hope this helps her. Please do write back if you have any additional concerns.

Wishing her good health...
Take care
Dr Saurabh Gupta.
Orthopaedic Surgeon.
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