Chronic pain is the most common cause of long-term disability. It lasts longer than "normal healing" (several months), and can cause severe problems.
A herniated disc is a condition which occurs when the soft inner center (nucleus) of a vertebral disc pushes through a crack in the outer portion (annulus fibrosus) of the vertebral disc. The herniated portion of the disc then constricts the spinal nerves adjacent to the disc, which results in pain. Symptoms can present as numbness, tingling, burning sensation which can travel down the arms and legs.