Spinal cord compression treatments

Spinal cord compression is a condition often related to spinal canal stenosis, or spinal narrowing, which causes the spinal cord to become compressed within the central spinal canal. Many times, spinal cord compression is a result of another degenerative spine condition, such as a herniated disc, bulging disc spondylolisthesis or bone spurs. These conditions are asymptomatic unless the narrowing spinal canal presses against a nerve root, which will result in local and radiating pain.

Patients diagnosed with spinal cord compression or spinal stenosis can often find relief through conservative, nonsurgical treatment, but surgery can become an option. If you have been diagnosed with one of these spine conditions, you should consult your doctor for treatment recommendations. The following can help you better understand the options available, helping you to be more engaged with this process.

Conservative treatment for spinal cord compression

Patients with mild spinal cord compression may be able to find lasting pain relief through conservative therapies that focus on lengthening and realigning the spine. Usually, the spinal canal narrows because a component of the spine moves out of alignment, causing the space between the spine and the walls of the spinal canal to diminish. Therefore, treatments that focus on realigning the components of the spine and lengthening the spine back into normal position will help to increase the space between the spine and the spinal canal.

Effective conservative treatments for spinal narrowing or spinal cord compression include:

  • Periods of rest
  • Therapeutic massage
  • Hot and cold compression therapy
  • Over-the-counter medication
  • Restorative yoga
  • Chiropractic care
  • Physical therapy
  • Epidural steroid injections

Your physician can help you determine the rate and frequency at which you should perform these treatments. Always tell your physician if you are changing your treatment plan or if you experience pain or discomfort during or after your treatments.

Minimally invasive stabilization surgery for spinal cord compression

While spinal cord compression can be often effectively treated with conservative treatment, surgical treatment may become an option if weeks or months go by without relief being experienced. Patients who are being recommended to undergo traditional open spine surgery, including fusion procedures, should contact Laser Spine Institute to learn more about the benefits of our minimally invasive decompression and minimally invasive stabilization procedures.

During a minimally invasive stabilization surgery at Laser Spine Institute, the surgeon will remove the damaged disc through a small incision in the spine. Unlike traditional open back fusion that cuts through the muscles surrounding the spine and increases the risk of infection and blood loss, our minimally invasive techniques are less disruptive to surrounding muscles or soft tissue. Once the damaged disc is removed, it is replaced with material to provide stability to the region.

Learn more about minimally invasive stabilization surgery

At Laser Spine Institute, we believe in patient-centered care. That means our patients receive the best treatment options in an environment of care and compassion. Because of this commitment, our minimally invasive procedures have earned a patient satisfaction score of 98 and patient recommendation score of 98 out of 100.^ For more information, please contact our team today.

We are here to help you find the best treatment options for your spine care needs and happily provide a free MRI review* to determine if you are a potential candidate for one of our procedures.