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Date of last update: 10/14/2017.

Forum Name: Obstetrics

Question: Pregnant with herniated disc

 mayamn78 - Thu Nov 19, 2009 3:01 pm


I have a disc herniation at L5-S1 and numbness on-off down my left leg. I was diagnosed with herniation in Jan' 09 and treatments followed Physical Therapy and 2 steroid shots which was not very useful. PT exercises make me mobile and do my housework. I have pain around my SI joint that cause sciatica pain down the back of my left leg mostly bearable so not taking any medication regularly....I just lie down for sometime when pain starts bothering.

I just found out I am pregnant (5 weeks). Last week I took 400mg Ibuprofen twice a day as per my doctors advice for pain before i knew I was pregnant. will this have any adverse effect on the baby?

Will the herniated disc worsen as pregnancy progresses. Will it be dangerous to the baby or me? Worried about it all the time. What can be done to reduce the pressure on the back? Please advise.
 Debbie Miller, RN - Fri Nov 27, 2009 2:00 pm

User avatar Hello,
Congratulations on your pregnancy. Of course you will have some additional challenges with this condition but it will not do harm to the baby. You will probably need some extra care from your health care providers and perhaps physical therapy and pain medication. The ibuprofen is not likely to cause a problem with the baby. Even though the pain medication of choice is acetaminophen, it is partly related to the blood thinning qualities of other analgesics and not so much due to damage it may cause the baby.

Anything you take in pregnancy should be monitored closely by your physician but there will be options for you as well as non-pharmaceutical treatments or even alternative therapy such as accupuncture. Work with your OB to make a plan for handling this complication in pregnancy. Hopefully you will be able to manage the pain but you may have some ongoing activity restriction to protect your back as the pregnancy progresses. Your physical therapist may be able to give you exercise suggestions to help strengthen your back as well.

Good luck with this painful condition.

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