Spinal stenosis is the overall term for a number of conditions stemming from a narrowing of the spaces within your spine. This narrowing can cause pressure on the nerves that travel through the spine. There are several types of spinal stenosis, with the most popular being central canal stenosis, lumbar spinal stenosis and cervical spinal stenosis.
Spinal stenosis usually happens in two main areas of the spine: cervical and lumbar. The cervical area is located in the neck, and the lumbar area is in the lower back. The reason these 2 areas are the majority of the spinal stenosis cases is that the cervical and lumbar area provide most of the bending, moving and flexibility of the spine. If the spinal canal narrows, it is more likely to compress the nerves in the spinal cord because of the continual bending and moving of the vertebrae.
Spinal Stenosis Causes
Spinal Stenosis can be caused by a number of different issues. Bulging or herniated discs are frequent culprits, bone spurs and deteriorated discs are also major causes. The aging process is also a normal cause of spinal stenosis in many patients. As we age, the ligaments in our spine become more compressed and thicker, and bone spurs may grow on the vertebrae. Deteriorating and misaligned discs can also cause the spinal canal to narrow, and the spinal cord or nerve root to be affected.
Regular exercises that help develop core strength and maintain flexibility in your spine are good starting points. Healthy diet, ideal weight and sleeping on a bed that supports your spine can help you avoid or reduce spine injuries or conditions.
However, if these treatments have not helped your condition, you may be a candidate for laser spine surgery. This minimally invasive treatment does not require hospitalization, and has you back to work in days, not weeks. Since the incision is only an inch or so long, recovery is much faster, minimal blood loss and minimal pain compared to an invasive back surgery.
To determine whether you are a candidate for laser spine surgery, please contact us today at 708-966-8000. Our doctors will consult with you, evaluate your condition and let you know the best options for you.