Herniated Disc Medications

Back Surgery Information

Herniated Disc Medications

Herniated disc medications are important for treating and managing herniated disc cases that are not yet severe enough to warrant surgery. In these cases, doctors rely on a number of medications designed to provide various levels of relief commensurate to the different levels of pain experienced by the patient. In this post, we will talk about these different medication choices that patients can contrast and compare to get an idea of which ones suit their condition best.

The most popular herniated disc medications fall into one of the following categories.

Pain relievers - Most of the over-the-counter pain relievers that we know fall into this classification. These are general pain killers or pain relief meds that are equally suitable for other types of pain aside from back pain. Within the general umbrella of pain reliever medicines are acetaminophen highlighted by Tylenol and NSAIDs or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen and aspirin. For lower levels of pain which are not alarmingly frequent, these medications are more than suitable.

Muscle relaxants - In herniated disc medications, muscle relaxants are not really pain relievers per se. Instead, they work by relaxing the muscles allowing your tightened back to ease up and reduce the pressure on the nerves along the spinal column. The most common muscle relaxant brand names include Flexeril, Soma, Valium and Robaxin.

Corticosteroids - Where typical pain relievers fail, corticosteroids are relied upon to provide relief, especially in cases of intense pain. One of the fastest-growing examples of corticosteroid medication for a herniated disc is an epidural injection. Epidural injections are called such because the treatment procedure requires injecting the medication straight into the space between the spinal cord and the spinal column also known as the epidural space. Like all pain relief medications, this procedure does not provide permanent relief. However, it is one of the more longer-lasting treatment options, often lasting 6 to 8 weeks. Epidural injections using corticosteroids are ideal herniated disc medications when the condition has progressed to the serious category but doctors are still undecided on how best to permanently ease the cause of pain.

Opiods - These medications are like corticosteroids in that they are only used for extremely serious cases. Opiods treat pain by altering the way the brain processes pain and as the name suggests, these are “addictive” in nature much like opium. Because of this, opiods are only used for short periods lasting not more than 2 weeks while permanent pain relief procedures are being evaluated for the condition.

The important thing to remember is that in cases of extreme pain, herniated disc medications only provide temporary relief and are not really treatment options per se. If you are constantly suffering from severe back pain, see your doctor immediately so permanent treatment can be done to alleviate your condition.