Neurogenic Claudication and the Lumbar Spine
- Neurogenic Claudication
- Risk Factors
Neurogenic claudication is a collection of symptoms that arise when spinal stenosis occurs in the lumbar (lower) region of the spine. “Neurogenic” means the condition is relating to the nerves, and “claudication” is derived from the Latin word for “limp.” Thus, since this set of symptoms affects the lower body, it often indicates damage or degeneration in the lumbar section of the spine. The result is pain, weakness, discomfort and cramping in the buttocks, hips and legs that can make it difficult to walk.
Spinal stenosis is often the primary factor behind neurogenic claudication. Spinal stenosis is a degenerative spine condition in which the passageways through which spinal nerves exit the spinal canal become constricted, often placing pressure on these nerves. Spinal stenosis also can occur in the spinal canal itself, placing painful pressure directly on the spinal cord. Bone spurs, herniated or bulging discs, or other spinal anomalies can develop to the point of compression, and it is this pressure on nerve tissue that causes pain and other symptoms – such as neurogenic claudication.
Spinal stenosis, generally a degenerative condition, can develop over time due to the natural aging process. The spinal anatomy gradually deteriorates over years of wear and tear, and can lead to the formation of bulging discs, herniated discs, bone spurs, or other issues that impinge on nerve passageways and result in sometimes debilitating symptoms.
The good news is that conservative, non-surgical treatments are often very effective in managing the effects of neurogenic claudication in the lumbar region. Pain, numbness, weakness, cramps and other effects can typically be managed through physical therapy, pain medication, hot/cold therapy and other methods. However, some individuals simply can’t find relief through conservative treatments and instead turn to surgery. If you’ve tried non-surgical methods for weeks or months with little relief, contact Laser Spine Institute today to learn about our outpatient, minimally invasive procedures. Tens of thousands of patients have trusted our effective procedures to help them find relief from neck and back pain.