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Lumbar Disk Disease

Your lumbar spine (low back) is made of five vertebrae separated by cartilaginous disks that serve as the "shock absorbers" of the spine. They act as a cushion between the bones and allow some flexibility of the lower back. Degenerative changes or trauma may rupture the annulus fibrosus, the tough band of cartilage surrounding each disk, and disk material may bulge or herniate into the spinal canal or nerve root canal. The herniated or bulging piece of the disk or degenerative bone spur may compress the spinal cord or nerve root, causing pain in the back or "tingling and numbness" that may radiate to the buttocks, hips, groin, or legs.
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