We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is a Diffuse Cervical Bulge?

By M. DePietro
Updated Mar 03, 2024
Our promise to you
The Health Board is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At The Health Board, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

The spine is made up of 33 vertebrae; seven of which make up the cervical spine. Discs are located in between each vertebrae and act as a cushion to help absorb shock. The discs are made up of two layers. The outer layer is a fibrosis material referred to as the annulus and the inner layer, which is made up of a softer material, is called the nucleus. A diffuse cervical bulge occurs when the annulus tears and the soft material of the nucleus protrudes or bulges out of a large portion of the disc.

Not everyone with a diffuse cervical bulge will experience symptoms. However, because the bulge can press on nerves in the spine, various symptoms can occur. Symptoms may include pain in the neck, which can radiate into the shoulders, arms and hands. A person may also have tingling or numbness in the hands.

All causes of a diffuse cervical bulge are not found. Some people may have weaker discs genetically and be more prone to developing a bulge in the spinal discs. Injuries to the cervical area from a fall, car accident or heavy lifting may cause a diffuse cervical budge on some people.

A diagnosis is made after a physical exam by a physician. The doctor will take a medical history and test range of motion. Usually an MRI will be ordered of the spine to determine the location of the diffuse cervical bulge. Treatment will depend on the severity of symptoms.

If symptoms are minor, over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication may help or steroids may be prescribed. For individuals who have more severe pain, epidural or steroid injections into the cervical area may reduce pain. Other treatments may include, heat and ice therapy. Ice can reduce inflammation and heat may relax the muscles. Physical therapy may be recommended to improve flexibility and stretch the neck.

For individuals who are not helped by other less invasive approaches, surgery may be an obtain. A procedure called a discectomy may be performed. This involves removing the part of the disc which is bulging or pressing on the nerve.

It may not be possible to prevent a diffuse cervical bulge in all cases; however, there are a few things that may reduce the risk. Using proper lifting techniques, such as bending at the knee and not straining the neck muscles may help. Maintaining a healthy weight and getting regular exercise, which strengthens the entire spine including the cervical area, may keep the discs healthy. Avoid smoking which can weaken spinal discs.

The Health Board is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
The Health Board, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

The Health Board, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.