Back pain. Computer artwork of a man with a painful back. His spine is shown in red. The back pain could be lumbago, a condition where the soft tissues around the bones of the spine have been strained. This can be caused by incorrectly lifting heavy loads. Treatments include rest, sleeping on rigid mattresses and pain medication.
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, arthritis, disc degeneration, traumatic injury, poor posture, overuse, or other factors.
While bone spurs by themselves 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. A scan of your spine can determine if bone spurs are to blame for any pain or weakness you’re suffering from, and your physician can then discuss treatment options with you. These can include rest, exercise, and medications – including anti-inflammatories, muscle relaxers, and pain relievers – cortisone shots, physical therapy, or even surgery.
It’s important to note, however, that many common 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 potentially feel relief from neck and back pain quickly, with better success rates and lower infection rates than many traditional surgical procedures. For a complimentary MRI review, and to learn more about our innovative procedures and streamlined patient experience, contact us today.