Sometimes the degenerated disc may deteriorate without any warning. The nucleus pulposus leaks out through the annulus fibrosus. This is akin to jam leaking from a doughnut. This is a disc prolapse. This will cause sciatica (leg pain) and back pain. This is because the nucleus pulposus presses on the nerves to the leg. A disc prolapse in the neck will cause brachalgia (arm pain). A disc prolapse will only occur in a degenerate disc. A healthy and well hydrated disc will not prolapse.
Majority of disc prolapses get better
In a true disc prolapse, the leg pain is worse than the back pain. 90 to 95% of discs prolapses get better without any intervention. Painkillers and gentle mobilisation is necessary. Core stability exercises will prevent a further disc prolapse. Brushing teeth twice a day improves dental health. Core stability exercises done twice daily will improve spinal health.