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A disc protrusion is a common form of spinal disc deterioration differentiated from a disc bulge by the percentage that protrudes. Discs degenerate in stages. Over time, the components of the spine deteriorate and discs dehydrate and lose elasticity weakening the disc and making it more vulnerable to change.
The first stage of natural weakening may begin as a disc protrusion, when the disc’s soft core which is contained within the disc’s outer fibrous-elastic wall starts pushing into the spinal column.
If the disc protrudes into the limited space of the spinal canal, it may cause nerve compression, pressure or irritation with a nerve root or spinal cord and symptoms may include: chronic neck and back pain, numbness and tingling, sciatica, loss of flexibility or mobility; stiffness or muscle weakness.