Saturday, October 25, 2014

Monday, March 16, 2009 Louise, Community Member, asks

Q: I have a herniated disc and now my toes are becoming numb. Will my toes progressively get number

I have serveral disc buldges and one herniation and sciatica.  My toes have progressive become numb, with pain in my nail bed.  I am reluctant to have back surgery, but I don't want to end up with numb feet and still be in pain. Should I consider surgery?


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Answers (2)
Greg, Community Member
3/17/09 12:18am

I wish I could answer this for you, however I have Neuropathy and have degenerative disc disease plus bulges and herniations.  I hope someone could help us both.  I went to my pain doctor and he said I should talk to the neurologist or neurosurgeon and see what they have to say.  The word surgeon scares me because I am 60 and do not want surgery, but the pain medication does not take care of the neuropathy.  I have had 2 previous cervical laminectomies which were NOT fused, 10 years later I am going out of my mind.

Renee Culver, Editor
7/23/14 9:22am

Hi Louise,


Many experts on the HealthCentral site suggest caution when considering back surgery as a first option. Have you spoken to your doctor about the problem? I'm sure you're aware that numbness is usually a sign of a nerve problem, and that's most likely caused by your disc herniation. Surgery is unlikely to be the only solution, though obviously you should listen to your doctor. Sometimes chiropractic care, gentle yoga, or other forms of therapy are helpful in easing numbness caused by back problems. Good luck!

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By Louise, Community Member— Last Modified: 09/17/14, First Published: 03/16/09