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What are some ways of treating a cervical disc herniation?

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Quick Answer

Treatments for cervical disc herniation include medications, lifestyle changes, steroid injections and surgery, according to MedlinePlus. Most people improve with treatment, though many experience back pain that may last several months or even a year or more.

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Full Answer

The best treatment options for cervical disc herniation depend on the severity of the patient's symptoms. Medications that may help to ease the pain of cervical disc herniation include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, narcotics, muscle relaxants and medications to calm the nerves, as stated by MedlinePlus. People who are overweight can find relief by losing weight. Physical therapy may also help to improve and treat cervical disc herniation; therapists teach their patients how to dress, lift, walk and perform other activities without pain.

Reducing physical activity often helps to decrease pain related to cervical disc herniation, according to MedlinePlus. Sufferers should avoid heavy lifting or twisting the back for about six weeks after the pain begins. Doctors may also suggest a series of steroid injections to reduce swelling and relieve symptoms. Surgery may also be an option for those who do not find relief with other treatments. The surgery to treat cervical disc herniation, which is called a diskectomy, removes part or all of the disk.

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