Herniated Disc in Neck Symptoms

A herniated disc in neck can cause another commond condition called a pinched nerve in neck. This is a result of a disc pushing against a cervical nerve root resulting in a dull pain that radiates down the shoulders and often into the arms and hands, with tingling and paraesthesia in the fingers often one of the first symptoms of a herniated disc or bulging disc. Weakness in the arm muscles may accompany the dull pain in some cases. Tingling, clumsiness and lack of fine motor control can also be symptoms of a herniated disc in the neck. Other symptoms of a herniated disc result from nerve compression and nerve transmission problems, such as imbalance when walking, and both bowel and bladder incontinence.

Herniated Disc in neck Symptoms
Pain symptoms from a bulging disc that becomes chronic
and severe usually results in a herniated disc

When a Bulging Disc becomes Herniated

Symptoms of a bulging disc that have appeared over time may suddenly become chronic and severe on herniation of that disc. Accurate and early diagnosis of a bulging disc may allow intervention that prevents it from herniating, thereby reducing the likelihood of severe symptoms and acute neck pain. Sudden trauma to the neck may precipitate this escalation of symptoms, whether through an accident or even, in some cases, spinal manipulation from chiropractors, massage therapists, or osteopaths.

Common areas where Herniated Discs Occur

Herniated or bulging discs in other regions of the spine will have similar symptoms involving the lower extremities. The cervical and lumbar regions of the spine are the most common problem areas for discs as there is so much pressure put on these areas and so little margin for error in terms of available space for nerves and blood vessels to travel through.

The most common site for disc herniation is at C5-C6, where the C6 nerve root exits the spinal column. Herniation at this site will usually lead to muscle weakness in the biceps, and in the wrist extensor muscles. Pain that radiates down into the thumb of the hand along with tingling and numbness indicate a herniation at C5-C6.

Shoulder Pain Symptoms from a Herniated Disc

Other signs of specific disc herniation include weakness in the deltoid muscles and possible shoulder pain without numbness and tingling which can occur when the disc C4-C5 has herniated. C6-C7 herniation usually results in tricep weakness extending into the finger muscles. Numbness and tingling are common in this case, with pain down into the middle finger. Pain that radiates down the arm and into the little finger side of the hand may indicate a disc herniation at C7-T1 (the trigeminal nerve), also associated with loss of grip strength

Last Updated: 02/05/2011