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A collapsed disc is a disc in the spinal column that has lost a significant amount of the water content that helps the disc serve as a cushion between vertebrae. Changes in the disc occur as part of an age-related disorder called degenerative disc disease.
A collapsed disc can occur in any part of the spine, including the cervical spine (creating neck pain) and the lumbar spine (creating lower back pain). Depending on the location of the collapsed disc, symptoms can include lower back pain that extends down through your buttocks to your upper thighs, or pain in the neck that extends down through the arms and hands, tingling and numbness in the arms or legs, unresponsive leg muscles and a condition known as foot drop.