Lumbar spinal arthritis
Lumbar spinal arthritis is a common cause of lower back pain, especially in older patients. This condition describes the degeneration and inflammation of one or more joints of the spine in the lumbar spine (lower back).
While generally considered a natural byproduct of aging, the pain and stiffness of spinal arthritis can greatly limit the ability to lead an active lifestyle. If you are suffering from arthritis of the spine, you understand the frustration of pain that accompanies most of your daily activities. Schedule an appointment with your physician or a spine care specialist to discuss your symptoms and determine if spinal arthritis is the cause of your pain.
Symptoms of lumbar spinal arthritis
Symptoms of lumbar spinal arthritis include stiffness or pain in the lower back as well as inflammation and swelling of the joints. Some people also experience pain that radiates throughout the buttocks, thighs and pelvic area. Oftentimes, spinal arthritis symptoms are most pronounced after long periods of inactivity or after prolonged strenuous activities.
If you have been diagnosed with spinal arthritis, your physician could recommend that you avoid certain activities that can place added stress on the lumbar spine. Participation in high-impact sports, frequent bending and lifting, or any activity that requires extensive twisting around the spine, such as playing golf, may need to be avoided. If you are required to perform such activities, wearing a supportive brace could be suggested.
There is no cure for arthritis. However, there are several effective conservative treatments that can help reduce the symptoms of the condition. Some of these treatment options include weight loss, exercise, chiropractic therapy and massage. Cases of severe arthritis can require spinal injections, prescription medications or physical therapy. If conservative treatments such as these methods fail to provide relief of symptoms, surgery could be suggested.
Next steps for pain relief from lumbar spinal arthritis
If conservative measures have failed to reduce your pain and symptoms from lumbar spinal arthritis, you may consider back surgery. Several surgical treatments exist, including minimally invasive procedures at Laser Spine Institute that are safer and more effective than traditional open back surgery. The type of minimally invasive surgery you receive will be dependent on the severity of your spinal arthritis, as well as whether or not your arthritis has caused the development of other degenerative spine conditions, which is common.
Our minimally invasive procedures are performed on an outpatient basis. Recovery time for these procedures is reduced* compared to open spine surgery, and the risk of postoperative complication is lower due to the minimally invasive nature of our surgery.
If you are considering surgery and would like more information about how Laser Spine Institute can help you find relief from back pain, contact Laser Spine Institute today. Our spine care experts can review your MRI report or CT scan and help you determine the best treatment option for your condition.