Bone spur treatment methods

As we age, bone spurs become more likely to form in our bodies. Bone spurs, or osteophytes, are common extra growths of bone that can occur throughout the body, including in the spine, and can cause significant pain. Bone spurs often arise as a side effect of rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis. Spinal arthritis is commonly known as osteoarthritis of the spine.

Each vertebra of your spine is linked to an adjacent vertebra through spinal discs and cartilage-lined facet joints. As you age, the cartilage within facet joints degrades, exposing the bone beneath. This lack of smooth, protective cartilage around joints can make even the simplest movements extremely painful. To learn more about bone spurs and how to find relief from this condition, read the following article.

What are bone spurs?

Bone spurs are extra bone produced by the body in an attempt to repair itself in the presence of a cartilaginous breakdown. However, it is a common misconception that bone spurs are pointed. Rather, they are smooth overgrowths around the joint surfaces. Despite the body’s intention, bones spurs do not help strengthen the spine. Instead, they may delay spinal nerves as they exit the spinal column between the vertebrae and cause nerve compression. As a result, symptoms may develop such as pain, tenderness, throbbing, limited range of motion and abnormal stiffness of the joints.

What bone spur treatment options could be prescribed?

Treatment of spinal nerve compression caused by bone spurs often begins conservatively with rest, low-impact exercise, stretching, physical therapy, chiropractic care and epidural steroid injections. None of these treatments remove bone spurs, but rather the treatments reduce nerve inflammation and pain. Therefore, the underlying cause remains, and pain and other symptoms can eventually return.

If you have developed bone spurs and your pain does not improve after several weeks or months, or it returns after attempting conservative treatments, contact Laser Spine Institute to learn about our outpatient procedures. Our minimally invasive spine surgery is often a clinically appropriate alternative to open neck or back surgery.^

Our minimally invasive decompression, and in severe cases, stabilization procedures, use a small incision that is muscle sparing to remove bone spurs in the spinal column, thereby allowing nerve inflammation to resolve. Reach out to us today and ask for a free MRI review* to determine if you are a candidate for one of our bone spur procedures.