Your thoracic spine is located in your upper middle back. In between the thoracic vertebrae are 11 spinal discs. A thoracic disc herniation is the result of a disc herniating into your thoracic spine.
Over time, due to trauma or degeneration, the outer layers of the disc (annulus fibrosus) can begin to break down. When this occurs, the inner core (nucleus pulposus) can begin to leak a jelly-like substance.
When a disc herniates into the side and affects the nerve root as it exits the spine, it is known as a lateral herniation.
The pain that results from this type of herniation might travel along the path of the affected nerve root. This can cause you to experience pain in your chest, back, or abdomen. This type of nerve pain is known as a radiculopathy.
For more information about thoracic disc herniation and its causes, click here.
Whether you are suffering a herniation in your thoracic spine, or another type of spinal injury, click here to find out the underlying cause of your pain.