What type of doctor treats foraminal stenosis?
If you are suffering from neck or back pain that is interfering with your daily activities and you believe foraminal stenosis is the cause, it’s important that you see a physician who can suggest the best treatment path for your specific case. Commonly referred to as foraminal narrowing, this condition occurs when an underlying degenerative spinal condition causes the passageways (foramina) through which nerves pass in the spine to narrow. A ruptured disc, for example, can cause foraminal stenosis if the inner core materials of the disc extend into the foramina and put pressure on a nerve root. The symptoms of this condition can include numbness, tingling, muscle weakness and pain that can radiate to other areas of the body.
Who should you see to find out your treatment options?
If you suspect that foraminal stenosis is the source of your discomfort, the first step is to see your primary care doctor. He or she will likely perform a physical exam and review your medical history while trying to diagnose your condition, and you may also be asked to undergo an imaging procedure such as an X-ray or an MRI. Once a diagnosis has been confirmed, your doctor will likely suggest that you try conservative treatment for several weeks to see if your symptoms can be reduced to an acceptable level. Options may include:
- Physical therapy
- Corticosteroid injections
- Pain and anti-inflammatory medications
- Hot/cold therapy
- Lifestyle modifications
If your foraminal stenosis symptoms are particularly severe, your primary physician may refer you to an orthopedist or neurologist who has a better understanding of your condition and may be able to get you started on a more targeted treatment regimen.
Is surgery a treatment option?
Surgery usually only becomes a consideration when conservative treatment doesn’t provide the necessary symptom relief. If you’ve decided to weigh your surgical options, Laser Spine Institute will provide a free MRI review* to help determine if you are a candidate for the minimally invasive spine surgeries we offer to treat foraminal stenosis. Our outpatient procedures utilize less than a 1-inch incision and muscle-sparing techniques and have helped thousands of patients.
Contact Laser Spine Institute today if you would like additional details about our foraminal stenosis treatment options.