Size of Southern New Hampshire Disc Herniation in Canal Is Not That Important

November 05, 2019

76% of us has a disc herniation. (1) Do 76% of us have back pain right now? Thankfully, no! The presence of a disc herniation on imaging is not the important issue. The matter is whether that disc is causing pain either mechanically (by pressing on a nerve) or chemically (by irritating a nerve). New Hampshire Spine and Sport figures this out in the course of the all-important physical exam. The MRI and other imaging studies are extras that can help - or distract - the chiropractic back pain treatment approach if the doctor and patient allow it. So let’s not let it! 


Some imaging studies or MRI images will illustrate huge discs in back pain sufferers who have little or no pain while back pain sufferers who are in awful pain may have a minimal disc herniation. It can be frustrating. Luckily, research continues to comfort all involved by explaining that size is not everything. A research paper reported that there was no correlation of pain and disability with the size of a disc herniation seen on MRI. (2) Another study of 368 patients who had a lumbar disc herniation said that 91.3% of them did not undergo back surgery within a year. The surgery patients’ discs occupied 31.5% of their spinal canal while the non-surgical patients’ discs took up 31.2% of their spinal canals. That is not much of a variance. Researchers report that this does not predict which patients will fail nonoperative treatment and need surgery within 2 years after getting a lumbar spine MRI scan. (3) In light of these findings, New Hampshire Spine and Sport chooses conservative treatment of these disc herniations.


Chiropractors are back pain specialists. Your Southern New Hampshire chiropractor is the Southern New Hampshire back pain specialist. Painful disc herniations are accepted at New Hampshire Spine and Sport as the spinal research shows that, though painful, disc herniations big and little react nicely to conservative treatment. As a matter of fact, in following up with patients who underwent conservative treatment for their disc herniation, 35% to 100% of the cases revealed a decrease in the size of the disc. (4) Two years after conservative care, herniated disc patients had a 16.5% decrease in size. 57% of patients had a reduction, 40% demonstrated no change in size, and 3% showed a larger herniation. (5) Particularly, conservative treatment of the disc herniation with flexion distraction Cox® Technic produced increases in the dimensions of the spinal canal by as much as 28% in area, 17% in height and 7% in width. (6) Southern New Hampshire back pain sufferers are grateful for such improvement in their disc herniations as pain relief results.

CONTACT New Hampshire Spine and Sport

Listen to the PODCAST with Dr. George Joachim on The Back Doctors Podcast with Dr. Michael Johnson. Dr. Joachim shares the case of a patient with a disc herniation resulting in spinal stenosis that created significant pain and alteration to her lifestyle which was improved with his use of the Cox® Technic System of Spinal Pain Management.

Schedule your Southern New Hampshire chiropractic appointment today. No matter its size, your disc herniation is in good company and in good hands at New Hampshire Spine and Sport.

New Hampshire Spine and Sport reports on new research that again states that the size of a disc herniation doesn’t matter that much.