House Minority Leader John Boehner was to undergo surgery Friday at Bethesda Naval Hospital for a bulging disc in his back, FOX News has learned.

The disc was pressing on Boehner's sciatic nerve and he was to have an MRI on Thursday, according to his spokesman, Kevin Smith.

Smith said Boehner, R-Ohio, has had back problems for 20 years, but this issue "flared up about three weeks ago" and the congressman is in pain.

Boehner was expected to return to work next week.

FOX News' Chad Pergram contributed to this report.