Spinal stenosis is a common condition that occurs when there is a narrowing of your spinal canal, leading to pressure or pinching of the nerves that pass through the canal. This condition typically occurs in the lower back and neck and is most commonly found amongst adults above 50 years old. If you are looking for more information about the best stenosis treatment in New York City we can help you.
Types of Spinal Stenosis
There are two major types of spinal stenosis, depending on what part of your spine stenosis occurs. You can have either one of the two types of stenosis, which are: Cervical Stenosis.
Lumbar Stenosis. With Cervical Stenosis, the narrowing and pinching occur in the part of the spine in your neck region. Lumbar Stenosis is the most common type of stenosis, and it occurs in the part of your spine in your lower back region.
Symptoms of Spinal Stenosis
The symptoms of spinal stenosis are generally dependent on the type of stenosis you have. In many cases, spinal stenosis is asymptomatic. However, when these symptoms appear, they often progress gradually and worsen over time.
Symptoms of Cervical Stenosis
- Numbness or a tingling sensation on your hand, arm, foot, or leg
- Weakness in hand, arm, or foot
- Neck pain
- Bowel or bladder dysfunction in extreme cases
Symptoms of Lumbar Stenosis
- Numbness or tingling in foot or leg
- Weakness in foot or leg
- Experiencing pain or cramps in your legs when you stand or walk for a long time
Causes of Spinal Stenosis
Spinal stenosis is generally caused by factors that result in the narrowing of the spinal canal. Some of these factors include:
Osteoarthritis: In many cases, spinal stenosis is caused by wear and tear due to age-related osteoarthritis. As you age over time, your spinal bones experience wear and tear damage which can stimulate bone spurs that grow into your spinal canal and narrow the space.
Herniated Discs: There are small discs located between each vertebra bone in your spinal column that serve as cushions. When these discs slip or are pushed into the spinal canal, they narrow the canal and also pinch the spinal nerves, leading to pain.
Thickened Ligaments: When the ligaments holding your spinal bones together become thickened, they become stiff and can bulge into your spinal canal, resulting in pain.
Injuries: Major injuries like car accidents can result in the dislocation or fracture of your spinal bones that may extend to the spinal canal and cause damage to the nerves there. Inflammation of nearby tissue following an accident or surgery can also put pressure on these nerves.
Tumors: Cancerous growths may also extend to your spinal nerves and lead to stenosis.
After you have been diagnosed with spinal stenosis or currently experience the condition’s symptoms, there are different treatment options available to you. Some of them are:
Your doctor may prescribe some pain relief medications such as ibuprofen and acetaminophen to give temporary relief from the pain. You may also be prescribed certain tricyclic antidepressants like amitriptyline to relieve the pain in some chronic cases. Some anti-seizure drugs have also been shown to reduce pain due to damaged nerves.
In extreme cases, your doctor may recommend receiving surgery as a treatment option for stenosis. There are different procedures available, some of which are:
- Minimally invasive surgeries.
Many people with spinal stenosis tend to limit their movement in a bid to reduce pain, but this often results in muscle weakness which does more harm than good. To prevent this, an effective form of treatment would be to receive physical therapy. Physical therapy aims to reduce symptoms associated with stenosis through:
- Manual therapy
- Training to stabilize your core and improve your balance
- Education on the right postures
- Helpful exercises to avoid frequent recurrence of symptoms
Are you in need of the best stenosis treatment in New York? You can avoid surgery and receive highly effective physical therapy treatment to relieve your symptoms at our facility.