What is Spinal Stenosis?
Spinal Stenosis describes a condition where the space between vertebra in the spine narrows frequently due to disc degeneration. The narrowed spinal cavity often causes pressure on the spinal cord and the network of nerves that travel from the spine to the arms and legs.
Though Spinal Stenosis can develop due to acute trauma or injury, and is common in people over the age of 50, people with a prior history of injury or surgery of the spine are at higher risk of developing spinal stenosis. Other potential people that are at risk for spinal stenosis include women or people with a prior history of osteoarthritis, degenerative disc disease, spinal tumors and certain types of arthritis.
Spinal Stenosis Symptoms
Symptoms of spinal stenosis can be felt throughout the area of the spine and throughout the neck, shoulders, arms, legs or back. Symptoms vary from patient to patient in both variety and degree and are usually relieved when extending the body to a forward position, as this relieves pressure off of the spine. Symptoms can be aggravated and may occur at varied intervals and/or worsen over time. These symptoms include:
- Burning Sensation
- Muscle Weakness
- Compromised Bladder or Bowel Functions
- Trouble Walking
- Leg Cramping
- Issues Maintaining Core Balance
- Vascular Hindrance
- Bone Spurs
- Loss of Sensation in the Legs and Feet
- Thickening or Hypertrophy of Ligaments
- Herniated or Bulged discs
- Loss of Sexual Function
Spinal Stenosis Treatment
Treatment strategies for Spinal Stenosis will almost always implement a form of pharmacological intervention that can range from over the counter pain or anti-inflammatory medications to narcotic or epidural steroid injections and will vary based on your specific condition and medical history.
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging Scan (MRI)
- Heat and Ice Therapy
- Computed Tomography Scan
- Blood Tests
- Lifestyle Counseling
- Physical Therapy
- Mechanical Bracing
- Lumbar Traction
- Decompression Therapy
- Pharmacological Intervention
- Interspinous Device Implant
Surgical Interventions are the most invasive treatment of spinal stenosis. It is always important to discuss all treatment options with your Chicagoland Medical professional before deciding on surgery, as you will be at a higher risk for additional surgical interventions related to the spine. Surgical options will vary depending on the part of the spine targeted with surgery.
At Chicagoland, we can help provide relief for your spinal stenosis WITHOUT invasive and dangerous surgery. Call us today to book a consultation and see how non-invasive pain-relief can help you return to your normal lifestyle.