A couple of weeks back, I got a call from a gym regarding a female with history of disc prolapse wishing to pursue kick boxing. Well for starters a lot of us aren’t really sure what a disc prolapse is. The basics go down to the spaces in your spine. There are spaces in your spine on which your spine rests, which are composed of discs in between. These discs are made up of cartilaginous material (like the one your ear and tip of nose is made up of) and are stacked in the spaces. Whenever the disc “desiccates” or dehydrates or protrudes out from the space, it causes compression on the surrounding nerves as well as results in incongruity of the spaces. The ultimate result is a spine which is painful, lacks stability and balance.
Generally this condition isn’t “easy” to get. Even if you engage in extreme physical sport, it is very “hard” to actually cause your disc to bulge out, but then again there are exceptions. Pushing on weight beyond your limit, improper posture, improper stances, lack of proper warm up and training without a proper coach can actually “help” you to get one. There are some congenital cases as well, but no need to delve into that.
Once you’ve had the condition, it is prudent to visit a Neurosurgeon and get his/her opinion. Sometimes surgery is required for correction though in cases conservative approach is usually done. To exercise after an episode of prolapse ….well that is the controversy that usually surrounds this condition, however it is generally a consensual opinion that high paced, extreme sports which put a stress on your back should be avoided and light physical exercised be undertaken. Remember to consult your physician, no matter how trivial you feel your injury is. Stay safe!
This article has been written by Dr. Arshad Beg who is a surgical registrar specializing in General Surgery. He works at Liaquat National Hospital Karachi and has a keen interest in MMA.