Prolapsed Disc – Case Study 3

Mr W is a Company Director who attended in considerable pain following a transatlantic flight having suffered a minor back strain a week earlier. What concerned him most was that his left foot had started to go numb and he found he was tripping up on kerbs since he arrived back two days previously.

He was seen by Mark Newman, Physiotherapist who was concerned on examining him that his reflexes on the affected side were diminished and he was also significantly weak in left foot movement against any resistance. The most likely diagnosis was a prolapsed disc but it was important with the progressing weakness of his foot that an MRI scan was obtained as quickly as possible.

Mark discussed Mr W’s case with Consultant Surgeon Mr David Sharp that day and a scan was arranged for the following day. Within three days the scan results and case was reviewed in the weekly Multidisciplinary meeting involving all specialists at the practice.

As a result Mr W was able to undergo a successful operation to remove the offending disc prolapse within one week of first presenting. Delay in such circumstances may have led to a permanent weakness of his foot but by acting quickly and working as a team, the solution to his problem was found avoiding long-term complication.

Mr W was fully fit and back at work within 4 weeks of his operation.