Annular Tear - Spine Care/Surgery

Annular Tear Treatment


Annular Tear Treatment Abroad


An intervertebral disc is a strong ligament which makes the connection between one vertebral bone to the next and which functions as the shock-absorbing cushion between each vertebra of the spine. Each disc is surrounded by a strong outer ring of fibers, called the annulus fibrosus, and a soft, jelly-like center, called the nucleus pulposus. The annulus is the strongest area of the disc and connects each vertebra together. The strong annular fibers contain the nucleus and distribute pressure evenly across the disc, absorbing the impact of the body's daily activities and keeping the two vertebrae separated.

The annulus can tear or rupture anywhere around the disc. If it tears and no disc material is ruptured, this is called an annular tear.  The outer 1/3 of the disc’s annular ring is highly innervated with pain fibers, that is why such a tear may be extremely painful. This tear will heal with scar tissue over time but is more prone to future tears and injury. Studies also indicate that annular tears may lead to premature degeneration of the disc, endplates, and facet joints.

Types

  • Radial Tears: This type of annular tear occurs as a result of natural aging process. Radial tears start from the middle of the disc and continue all the way to the outer layer of the annulus fibrosus. Radial tears can also result in disc herniation.
  • Peripheral Tears: This type of annular tear occurs in the external fibers of the annulus fibrosus. The cause of peripheral tears is often a traumatic injury. Peripheral tears can also cause breakdown or degeneration of an intervertebral disc.
  • Concentric Tears: Concentric tears commonly occur as a result of injury and they occur circumferentially between the layers of the annulus fibrosus.

Causes

Most annular tears are caused by the natural aging process. Since the neck and back are responsible for bearing most of a person’s body weight, they are susceptible to a great deal of wear over time. The intervertebral discs start to degenerate to a certain degree from the age of 30. This degeneration can lead to annular tears with repetitive motion since the annulus is in a weakened state. Traumatic injury can cause an annular tear. This is typically seen in high-impact sports such as gymnastics and football and in people with strenuous occupations.

Symptoms

  • Midline back pain in excess of leg pain.
  • Pain is often worse when sitting compared to standing,
  • Pain when coughing, sneezing, forward bending and lifting

Treatment

If the patient has a mild tear, then it will heal on its own or with the help of conservative treatment. If the pain is severe and does not respond to traditional treatments, surgery might be an option. The conservative treatment includes pain medication such as naproxen, ibuprofen and physical therapy.

Patients who have a full annular tear and a ruptured disc need surgery to eliminate or reduce their symptoms. The common options for such a surgical repair include a discectomy (disc material removal), a microdiscectomy and a secondary spinal fusion to compensate for the removed spinal disc.

Benefits

  • Decrease the chances of disc herniation
  • Relieve pain
  • Relieve pressure on spinal nerves
  • Patient is able to live a normal life and perform activities that were once painful

Cost

In the United States, Annular Tear surgeries may cost up to $50,000, though costs may reach as high as $100,000 in some places. This cost may not include hospital care, diagnostics, imaging, medications and fiscal therapy or rehabilitation services, depending on geographic region. However, individuals traveling to foreign destinations such as Mexico, Latin America, and Asia may enjoy between 30% and 50% savings on costs of the same type of procedure, which include all inclusive stays, care, and medical support.

Doctors

For the treatment of Annular tear you need various doctors depending on the right procedure for you. You might have to see a physical therapist, an occupational therapist, an orthopedist and a licensed acupuncture therapist. Orthopedic surgeons should be certified and experienced in all types of spinal surgeries, including cervical, thoracic and lumbar procedures and techniques, and belong to recognized organizations and associations. 


For more information about the Annular Tear treatment and information about the best clinics offering the procedure, please contact us!

Spine Care/Surgery - Spine Care/Surgery, PlacidWay, The spine is the protective bony casing for the spinal cord, the nerve pathways that connect every part of the body with the brain. Spine health is essential for optimal health and fitness, but a multitude of injuries and disease processes can affect the spine.

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