Foraminal Narrowing – Treatment Options
Foraminal narrowing treatment often begins with conservative, non-surgical methods. In severe cases of nerve compression caused by foraminal narrowing, a physician or back specialist may recommend surgery, especially if weeks or months of conservative treatments prove ineffective.
Most patients seek treatment for foraminal narrowing when their symptoms of nerve root compression become chronic, severe and start to interfere with the individual’s quality of life. These symptoms typically include muscle weakness, pain, muscle spasms and cramping, numbness and a pins-and-needles sensation. The location of these symptoms will vary depending on the position of the affected foramen, but may include the neck, shoulders, arms, hands, lower back, buttocks, back of the legs and feet.
As stated previously, treatment for foraminal narrowing typically begins with conservative methods. These methods may include one or more of the following:
- Intermittent periods of rest
- Pain medications
- Physical therapy
- Moderate exercise
- Hot/cold therapy
- Alternative treatments (such as yoga, acupuncture, or massage therapy)
It is important to note that these treatments should only be pursued under the guidance of a physician. This will help to prevent drug interactions and further damage to the neck and/or back.
Other treatment options
If conservative foraminal narrowing treatment provides little or no relief after several months, a physician may recommend open back surgery. As with all medical procedures, there are certain risks that are associated with spine surgery and many patients require extended periods of recovery time. If you are hesitant to undergo open back surgery, contact Laser Spine Institute to learn about our minimally invasive procedures. Our procedures utilize state-of-the-art technology and have helped tens of thousands of patients find relief from neck and back pain.