What Bone Spur Treatment is Best for You?
Non-surgical, conservative bone spur treatment
Non-surgical bone spur treatment is often recommended during the first few weeks – or months – after a patient’s diagnosis. Although non-surgical therapies won’t make a spinal bone spur go away, they can help minimize the pain and discomfort that occurs when the bony deposit presses up against the spinal cord or a nerve root. Conservative treatments can typically be combined until a patient discovers a routine that’s right for his or her needs.
Medication is perhaps the most commonly recommended conservative spinal bone spur treatment. Patients can use over-the-counter or prescription pain medications and anti-inflammatory drugs to help control their symptoms; acetaminophen, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and opioids are all options to consider. Epidural steroid injections, in which an anti-inflammatory steroid and a local numbing agent are injected directly into the epidural space of the spine, may also be considered. A physician can prescribe a proper dosing regimen to meet a patient’s specific needs.
Physical therapy and exercise are also common forms of non-surgical bone spur treatment. A physical therapist can help a patient stretch and strengthen the muscles that support the neck or back, while also improving flexibility and increasing range of motion. Low-impact exercise, such as walking, may also be beneficial.
In addition to medications and exercise, some patients also incorporate options such as hot and cold compresses, acupuncture and chiropractic care into their bone spur treatment plans. For instance, many patients obtain short-term pain relief by visiting a chiropractor or massage therapist, practicing yoga or using heat and ice packs to relax tight muscles and promote blood flow. Patients might also consider lifestyle changes, such as weight loss and dietary adjustments, to improve their overall well-being and enhance the effects of other forms of bone spur treatment.
Minimally invasive bone spur treatment options
If non-surgical bone spur treatment does not produce the desired results, surgery may become an option. While conservative therapies can only help a patient manage symptoms, surgery is designed to remove part or all of a bone spur or use other methods to decompress the nerve or nerve root that a bone spur has compressed. This can lead to more meaningful pain relief. However, because conventional open spine procedures are highly invasive and often require many months of recuperation, many patients choose to consider minimally invasive alternatives instead.
At Laser Spine Institute, we perform a number of minimally invasive procedures that can help address spinal bone spurs and other degenerative spine conditions. These surgeries include:
- Foraminotomy — If a bone spur is encroaching a foramen (one of the narrow passageways through which spinal nerve roots branch out to the rest of the body), a surgeon can widen the opening to alleviate pressure on sensitive neural tissue.
- Laminotomy — If inadequate space in the spinal canal due to a bone spur is contributing to a patient’s symptoms, a surgeon can remove part of the lamina, which serves as a “roof” across the top of the spinal canal. This may be a helpful type of bone spur treatment if a bone spur has developed on a patient’s lamina.
- Discectomy — If a herniated or bulging disc is compressing a nerve, a surgeon can remove the displaced material to alleviate the compression.
- Facet Thermal Ablation — If a facet joint in the spine becomes excessively deteriorated, a surgeon can “deaden” the nerve that innervates the joint so that the nerve can no longer register pain.
Some patients are candidates for our minimally invasive stabilization procedures, which are often recommended in cases of more advanced spinal degeneration. These include:
- Decompression with Interlaminar Stabilization™ Device — This procedure is designed to decompress both sides of the spine for immediate stabilization, while allowing the spine to retain its natural mobility.
- Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion (TLIF) — This procedure is designed to address instability in the lumbar (lower) part of the spine.
- Lateral Lumbar Interbody Fusion (LLIF) — This procedure allows surgeons to remove bone spurs or other materials that are compressing a nerve in the lumbar spine, then heighten the area to reduce the likelihood of further problems in the future, through small incisions in the sides of the abdomen.
- SI Joint Fusion — This procedure is used to join the pelvis and the sacrum, which can reduce the symptoms a patient is experiencing while helping the patient retain range of motion.
- Posterior Cervical Fusion — This procedure is performed to add extra support to the spine, and can be an effective treatment for compression-related spinal instability.
- Anterior Cervical Discectomy Fusion (ACDF) — This procedure is designed to address instability problems in the cervical (upper) part of the spine in the neck.
- Cervical Disc Replacement — This procedure involves the replacement of a damaged or deteriorated intervertebral disc with a prosthetic substitute. This surgery is typically performed as an alternative to a fusion.
These minimally invasive surgeries are performed on an outpatient basis, so patients can leave Laser Spine Institute the same day as their procedure and recover from bone spur treatment in the comfort of their own homes. Additionally, our minimally invasive approaches are associated with shorter recovery periods compared to open spine surgery, as well as lower risks of complications and infections.
Laser Spine Institute has provided exceptional bone spur treatment to thousands of people from around the world, helping them find meaningful relief from neck and back pain. Take a moment and read through a few of our previous patient testimonials to see the lives we have touched.
The skilled staff at Laser Spine Institute has extensive experience with bone spur treatment, as well as treatment for a number of other spinal conditions. Our team provides exceptional care to all visitors; prospective patients can view our page with further information about our knowledgeable spine surgeons.
If you have remaining questions, browse through our FAQ pages to find an answer. Here, the experts at Laser Spine Institute have answered some of the most common questions asked by our patients. If you still have questions or would like more information about our bone spur treatment options, please contact us and we will be happy to assist you.
Traditional Bone Spur Treatment Paths
Conventional open back surgery may occasionally be required, although patients face longer hospital stays and more challenging recoveries, along with a higher risk of complications compared to outpatient procedures. However, a physician will be able to help a patient determine the best bone spur treatment options for their unique needs. For a professional review of your MRI, contact Laser Spine Institute today.