Re: How would a herniated discs affect bowel movements?
Welcome to the board.
In most cases, a herniated disc will not affect bowel or bladder function. Any disc that herniates runs the risk of pressing into a nerve root. In the case of the lumbar discs, if there is a large herniation, it is possible that it will result in cauda equina syndrome. You can find lots of information about CES in books or on the internet.
Patients are always warned that if they have back problems/back pain and suddenly develop bowel or bladder problems, they should immediately call their doctor or go to the ER. This is a true medical emergency as the longer it goes untreated, the greater the possibility that there will be for nerve damage that will effect the function of the bowels or bladder.