Asked for male, 56 years old from Kurukshetra
Because the annulus has such a limited blood supply, annular tears can take quite a long time to heal on its own — 18 months to two years. The majority of doctors will start with a conservative approach to treatment, prescribing anti-inflammatory medication to relieve the pressure and possibly steroid injections to alleviate the pain. Regular physiotherapy treatments, spinal traction therapy, and physical therapy can also bring relief to individuals suffering from annular tears.
if these conservative treatments are not effective, then surgical treatment may be necessary. Annular tears can be sealed off with a laser procedure to prevent any further injury. Or, a minimally invasive procedure called an endoscopic discectomy can be effective if there’s a painful loose disc fragment in an annular tear. In more severe cases, disc replacement or spinal fusion surgery can replace a damaged disc. There are also some highly advanced treatment options that are in development. For example, using a patient’s stem cells to regenerate their annular fibres. However, these treatments are only used on a case by case basis.
If you are experiencing back pain that isn’t getting better with rest and a decrease in activity, then you should see your orthopaedician. Severe annular tears, when left untreated, can lead to more painful conditions, such as a herniated disc. A good treatment plan can relieve your discomfort, return you to your preferred level of activity, and keep your back healthy and pain-free.