Spinal Stenosis Treatment
Conservative & Surgical Pain Management Services in Texas
Spinal stenosis is a disorder in which the spinal canal narrows, leading to back pain and leg pain that comes and goes with activities such as walking. Although stenosis can occur in all areas of the spine, it most commonly affects the lumbar (lower) spine. When spinal stenosis occurs in the back, it produces pressure on the spinal cord and may affect gait, bowel and bladder function. Thus spinal stenosis almost always requires spinal treatment. Since it most commonly results from a combination of aging and degeneration of the spine, stenosis usually affects people over 50 years of age. However, the disorder also occurs in younger people who have abnormally small spinal canals from birth.
Since spinal stenosis gives the spinal cord and nerves less room to move, they can become irritated and inflamed. Stenosis in the lower back can cause pain in both the back and legs, with the pain becoming worse when walking or standing for a prolonged period of time. Rest, which takes pressure off the nerve roots, may ease or even eliminate these symptoms.
Spinal Stenosis Symptoms
You may feel pain from spinal stenosis in your neck, through your arms and legs, and in your back, depending on the part of the spine most affected. This nerve pain may also make it difficult to do something as simple as to walk. Other symptoms include:
- Feeling hot or cold
- Loss of muscle strength
- Unusual clumsiness
Diagnosing Spinal Stenosis
Neck and back pain can arise from a variety of causes, so imaging tests such as X-rays, MRI, and CT scans are often needed to view the spinal column in greater detail and correctly diagnose spinal stenosis.
Treatment for Spinal Stenosis
Providers will often treat the pain caused by spinal stenosis by reducing the inflammation around the nerves. For more serious cases or instances when your pain does not respond to traditional treatments, you and your provider may discuss interventional options to relieve pain of your spinal nerves.