COMMON SYMPTOMS AND SIGNS OF L4-L5 SLIPPED DISC
Depending on the type and severity of the underlying cause, the L4-L5 slipped disc may cause lumbar radicular pain of the L4 and/or L5 spinal nerves, also called sciatica. Common symptoms and signs include:
- Sharp pain, typically felt as a shooting and/or burning feeling that originates in the lower back and travels down the leg in the distribution of a specific nerve, sometimes affecting the foot.
- Numbness in different parts of the thigh, leg, foot, and/or toes.
- Weakness while moving the thigh, knee, or foot in different directions.
- Abnormal sensations, such as a feeling of pins-and-needles and/or tingling.
TREATMENT FOR L4-L5
Nonsurgical Treatments for L4-L5
- Medication. Both prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) medications are used to help relieve pain from L4-L5. Typically, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are usually tried first. For more severe pain, opioids, and/or corticosteroids may be used.
- Physical therapy. Exercise and physical therapy can be modified to specifically target pain stemming from L4-L5 and the lower back. These therapies help stabilise the back and keep the muscles and joints well-conditioned—providing long-term relief.
- Chiropractic manipulation. Chiropractic adjustment of the lumbar spine may help relieve pain stemming from the L4-L5.
- Self-care. To promote healing and/or prevent an L4-L5 injury from becoming worse, a few tips include avoiding:
- Repeated bending of the spine
- Sudden, abrupt movements, such as jumping
- High-intensity exercise and lifting heavy weights
Injection Treatments for L4-L5
- Lumbar epidural steroid injections. Steroids injected directly into the spinal epidural space can help decrease inflammation and reduce the sensitivity of nerve fibres to pain, generating fewer pain signals.
- Radio-frequency ablation. Radio-frequency ablation may be used to treat pain from the L4-L5 vertebral facet joints.
Surgical Treatments for L4-L5
- Microdiscectomy. In this surgery, a small part of the disc material near the nerve root is taken out. A portion of the bone adjacent to the nerve root may also be trimmed to relieve compression.
- Laminectomy. A part or all of the lamina (area of bone at the back of the vertebra) is removed to provide more room for the cauda equina.
- Foraminotomy. The opening for the spinal nerve root (intervertebral foramen) is enlarged by trimming bony overgrowth, relieving the compression.
- Facetectomy. Nerve root compression is relieved by trimming and/or removing a part of the facet joints.
- Lumbar artificial disc replacement. This surgery is not very common and includes a complete replacement of the intervertebral disc to relieve nerve root compression and replace it with an artificial implant.
- Fusion of L4-L5. Depending on the extensiveness of the surgery and the amount of bone removed, the surgical segment may be fused with the adjacent motion segment to provide stability. https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/slipped-disc/