Symptoms of a herniated nucleus pulposus include pain and numbness in the neck or back, according to the Laser Spine Institute. Symptoms tend to worsen during physical activity and while sitting or leaning forward.
A herniated nucleus pulposus occurs when the nucleus pulposus of an intervertebral disc leaks into the spinal column through a tear in the annulus fibrosus, explains the Laser Spine Institute. The primary causes are the body’s weight causing stress or pressure on the discs over time and overexertion during high-impact sports or when lifting heavy objects. The condition is often successfully treated with hot and cold compresses, pain medications, weight loss and exercise.