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A slipped disc or prolapsed disc can cause pain, weakness, and disability. Many disc problems gradually get better with rest, physiotherapy, and pain relief.

However, if your disc prolapse is affecting your wellbeing and quality of life, The London Clinic can provide expert treatment. The internationally renowned spinal surgeons provide specialist disc prolapse surgery, and we offer a comfortable, supportive environment in which to recover.

Spinal disc prolapse or herniation happens when the soft tissue cushion between the spinal bones slips out of position. The tissue pad can press on nerves, resulting in weakness and pain in the back, buttocks, groin, and legs.

The London Clinic is a centre of excellence for orthopaedic surgery. The expert surgeons provide a bespoke spinal surgery service to treat pain and restore your back's strength, mobility, and function. 

Graphical representation of a herniated (slipped) disc

What are the symptoms of a slipped disc?

Slipped disc, prolapsed disc, and herniated disc are all different names for the same problem. Not all back pain is due to disc problems. Sprains, strains, and muscle spasm can also cause significant discomfort.

Disc prolapse is characterised by:

  • Pain in the lower back or neck
  • Stiffness and reduced movement; it can be difficult to bend down or straighten the back
  • Tingling or numbness in the back, limbs, hands, feet or shoulders, depending on the location of the displaced disc
  • • Muscle weakness
  • Pain spreading into the buttocks, hips, groin, or legs. This happens when the disc presses on the sciatic nerve and is known as sciatica
  • Severe disc herniation in the lower back can affect a bundle of nerves in the area resulting in weakness, numbness in the genitals, and incontinence. This is called Cauda Equina Syndrome and is a serious problem that requires urgent expert care.

If you are worried about back pain, see your GP or contact The London Clinic for assessment, tests, and treatment. We offer an All-Inclusive Package for the management of disc prolapse.

Disc prolapse assessment at The London Clinic

The London Clinic has a multi-disciplinary team of spinal surgeons, neurologists, and physiotherapists that specialise in the investigation and treatment of disc prolapse and back pain. 

At your initial consultation, your orthopaedic consultant will take a careful history, examine your back, and find out the impact your pain is having on your lifestyle. They will arrange tests to diagnose your back problem and develop a customised treatment plan.

Our state-of-the-art imaging suite offers the latest diagnostic tests. These include:

Using the findings from the consultation, examination, and tests, your consultant will plan a treatment programme. 

Education on posture and safe lifting techniques, anti-inflammatory medication, weight control, physiotherapy, and spinal injections can ease discomfort for many people.

However, for people with severe, unremitting, or recurrent pain, spinal decompression surgery is needed to reduce pressure on the nerves, decrease discomfort, and improve movement and function. 

Disc Prolapse surgery facts

At The London Clinic, your specialist surgeon will perform disc prolapse surgery under general anaesthetic. You will be unconscious, pain-free, and supported by an experienced consultant anaesthetist throughout the procedure.

Admission will be the day before surgery or on the morning of your procedure. Your specialist team will give you individual advice on preparing for surgery and when to stop eating and drinking.

The specific procedure will depend on your operation. Disc prolapse surgery at The London Clinic can include:


Specialist back surgery to remove the damaged intervertebral disc or excise the diseased part of a disc.


Minimally invasive surgery to treat a prolapsed disc. This keyhole technique offers a smaller scar and a quicker recovery. 

Spinal fusion

Spinal fusion is surgery to join two or more of the spinal bones together using a bone graft. This reduces movement and flexibility but decreases pain.

Lumbar spine stabilisation

A specialist procedure performed in conjunction with Spinal Fusion. The surgeon implants screws, plates, or rods to support the fused vertebrae and maintain spinal flexibility. 

Vertebral disc prosthesis

The surgeon inserts a high-tech prosthetic device to replace the damaged disc.


An operation to remove a segment of bone from one or more of the spinal bones. The procedure helps reduce any compression or pinching of the nerves.

Recovery from Disc Prolapse Surgery

Your recovery following disc prolapse surgery will depend on the type of operation, the number of discs treated, and your general health. After surgery, you will experience some discomfort and difficulty moving. However, the team will provide pain-relief to reduce pain and help you get up and about.

You will usually be able to go home the day after your operation. Your surgeon and the expert multi-disciplinary team will provide a personalised plan of recovery and rehabilitation. 

The physiotherapists have access to cutting-edge facilities, including a gym and aquatic therapy suite. They'll also give you a home exercise programme to help strengthen your muscles, reduce stiffness, and restore your mobility and confidence.

The team will arrange appointments to remove any stitches and check your progress. If you have problems or concerns at any time, the staff at The London Clinic are always available to offer support and guidance.

Why choose The London Clinic?

The London Clinic is dedicated to providing the best, personalised healthcare with over 600 world-renowned consultants available to offer informed health advice and treatment.

Spanning Harley Street and Devonshire Place, The London Clinic is situated in the heart of London’s internationally-known medical district. This central location, together with state-of-the art technologies and facilities that are not widely available in other hospitals, makes The London Clinic the hospital of choice for around 120,000 patients every year.

The London Clinic is an HTA licensed and JACIE accredited cancer centre with an ‘Excellent’ MacMillan Quality Environment Mark and with access to a Level 3 intensive care unit.

Offering affordable and competitive self-pay packages and expert support from Clinical Nurse Specialists and our specialised multidisciplinary team, over 98% of our patients said they would recommend The London Clinic to their friends and families.

Treatment cost

The London Clinic offers affordable, competitive self-pay packages for certain treatments. An All-Inclusive Package for this treatment is available from £8,735.

Patients have the option to spread the cost of treatment with Chrysalis Finance.

Please call +44 (0)20 3613 7502 to speak to our helpful team to find out more and to book an appointment.

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