There are pathways up and down the spinal cord that deliver messages from the brain to the body and from the body to the brain.
Pressure on the spinal cord from a bulging disc can cause all kinds of unusual problems. Patients may report muscle weakness in the arms or numbness and tingling in the hands. Loss of bladder sensation can occur when neural pathways controlling the bladder are affected. An underactive or overactive bladder can also occur.
According to a recent study at least half of all patients with pressure on the spinal cord in the neck region have bladder problems. Surgery to remove the pressure gives relief from urinary problems in 90 percent of all cases.