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Back pain radiating to the legs. Dorsal inner annular tear found in Discogram. Is the pain due to this?

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I was in a car accident and have had debilitating back pain that goes down my legs. The doctors decided to do a discogram which showed a small dorsal inner annular tear at L3-4. Can this cause such terrible pain?
Posted Tue, 8 May 2012 in Back Pain
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 58 minutes later

Thanks for posting your query.

An annular tear in the disc at L3-L4 causes mild herniation of the disc which compresses the nerve roots that are coming out from the foramina. Compression of these nerves produces the shooting pain in the legs. The tear per se is not so painful.

Right now you can follow these measures for some relief:
- If the pain is severe, you need bed rest till the pain resolves.
- Get some analgesics prescribed and apply analgesic spray or ointments.
- While resting, keep a pillow under your knees if it doesn't bother you.
- Avoid lifting heavy objects.
- Back strengthening exercises and stretching exercises for your hamstrings daily as advised by a Physiotherapist.
- Avoid exercises in times of pain.
- Improvise your posture while sitting.

Please follow your orthopedician's advise and go for regular follow up.

I hope this answers your query effectively.

In case you have additional questions or doubts, you can forward them to me, and I shall be glad to help you out.

Please accept my answer in case you do not have further queries.

Wishing you good health.

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