The majority of the human spine is composed of vertebrae extending from the skull to the pelvis. These vertebrae are held together by spinal discs which act as ligaments and shock absorbers. When a spinal disc injury occurs, outer ring of the disc is torn. This type of injury can also be referred to as a spinal disc herniation. Depending on the severity of the injury, a herniated disk can damage nerves and result in pain, numbness or weakness in the leg or arm.
Many people coping with a spinal disc injury will require medical care, and in some instances, surgery. For treatment and recovery purposes, it is helpful to become acquainted with terms relating to the anatomy of the human spine and surrounding structures. To help guide you through the process, we invite you to look at common spinal disc injury terms and available resources.