Whether they are cervical, thoracic or lumbar, bone spurs that occur anywhere along your spine can cause a number of painful problems. However, bone spurs, or osteophytes, don’t necessarily cause any issues on their own, even though many people associate the word “spur” with something sharp or pointed. These excess bone growths are actually smooth in composition, and your body can form them due to a number of reasons, including aging, disc degeneration, arthritis, traumatic injury, poor posture, overuse or other factors.
While bone spurs aren’t necessarily a cause for concern – these growths are very common as your body ages and are often harmless – they can cause serious side effects if they grow to the point where they impinge on a nerve or another bone. When the osteophytes in question are cervical, thoracic or lumbar bone spurs, this can potentially result in a number of severe side effects, such as:
- Weakness in the extremities
- Severe neck or back pain
- Restricted movement
- Radiating arm and leg pain
- In some cases, disability
Talk to your physician if you’re experiencing any of these symptoms and are wondering if cervical, thoracic or lumbar bone spurs might be the cause. An X-ray of your spine can determine if bone spurs are to blame for any pain or weakness you’re experiencing, and your physician can then discuss treatment options with you. These may include rest, exercise and medications – including anti-inflammatories, muscle relaxers and pain relievers – physical therapy, cortisone shots or even surgery.
It’s important to note, however, that traditional surgical treatment options for cervical, thoracic and lumbar bone spurs are invasive procedures, which can possibly leave you with a lengthy, painful recovery process. But with the minimally invasive, state-of-the-art procedures performed at Laser Spine Institute, you can find relief from neck and back pain more quickly, and with a better success rate and lower infection rate than what is associated with traditional open spine surgery. To learn more about our innovative procedures and streamlined patient experience, contact us today.