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A spinal disc is the pad that sits between two adjacent vertebra, and acts as a spine shock absorber. It is made of mostly water and cartilage, and has two parts, a central portion called the nucleus, and outer portion called the annulus. Due to injury, or the aging process, the anulus can tear and the inner nucleus can squeeze out through the tear and compress and pinch the local nerve. In most cases disc herniations get better without injections or surgery. This is accomplished through chiropractic care using a table that performs spinal disc decompression, or physical therapy using a technique called McKenzie Therapy that can reduce the disc bulge as well. In patients unresponsive to conservative care, epidural injections can help reduce the pain and inflammation. In less than 5% of the cases, spine surgery may be needed to decompress the nerve by a procedure called discectomy.

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