The intervertebral disk is a gelatinous shock absorber which separates the vertebrae of the spine. It consists of a soft inner nucleus and an outer protective annulus fibrosis. When the outer annulus is fissured or torn, it allows the nucleus to protrude or herniate. Herniated discs can be minor or more serious depending upon the size and location of the herniation.
Pain in the neck or lower back region which may radiate into the arms or legs depending upon any irritation, inflammation, or compression of nearby nerve roots. This may be associated with numbness, tingling, cramping, or weakness.