Prevention of neurogenic claudication and other symptoms of spinal stenosis

Neurogenic claudication, or limping related to a nerve issue, is a common symptom of narrowing in the lower spine (spinal stenosis). This can be one of the most debilitating symptoms that accompanies this condition because it directly affects your ability to do the things you love, like spending time with your family or just being able to cook a meal.

If you have been diagnosed with spinal stenosis and are trying to prevent the development of neurogenic claudication, or stop it from worsening, reading about the causes and risk factors of this condition through the information in the following article can be beneficial. Make sure to consult your doctor about any lifestyle changes or treatments you decide to undertake.

Causes of neurogenic claudication

Spinal stenosis occurs when a part of the spine, like a disc or joint, becomes displaced and causes narrowing. This is commonly related to degenerative spine conditions like spinal arthritis or degenerative disc disease. Congenital conditions and tumors can also cause spinal stenosis in rare cases.

Symptoms occur when this narrowing puts pressure on the spinal cord or an exiting nerve root, which can result in both local pain or irritation and radiating symptoms to the extremities. A compressed nerve from narrowing in the lower spine can cause symptoms like neurogenic claudication in the hips, buttocks and legs. The pain, muscle weakness and cramping associated with it can have a severe effect on mobility and produce the limping that gives this symptom its name.

Risk factors of neurogenic claudication

Many of the spinal conditions that cause spinal stenosis occur because of deterioration that takes place during the natural aging process. Years of strain on the spine can take a toll on the neck and back, causing the spine to degenerate and present symptoms like neurogenic claudication. While the natural aging process happens to everyone, you can take action to potentially slow degenerative changes by being aware of certain risk factors that can accelerate their development. Here are some proven ways to maintain your overall spine health:

  • Avoid smoking and using nicotine products
  • Maintain a healthy body weight
  • Participate in moderate exercise
  • Take care when lifting heavy objects
  • Practice good posture and body mechanics

Neurogenic claudication treatment

If you are already dealing with symptoms of spinal stenosis, such as neurogenic claudication, there are options for pain relief. Conservative treatments prescribed by your doctor or specialist, such as physical therapy, chiropractic care, pain medication and epidural steroid injections provide many patients with enough symptom relief to return to the activities of daily life. Surgery becomes an option when several weeks or months of conservative treatment don’t bring needed relief.

If you are exploring surgery to treat spinal stenosis but are concerned about the risks and difficulties of a traditional open spine procedure, contact Laser Spine Institute. We are the leader in minimally invasive spine surgery, which offers many advantages and less risk compared to traditional open back surgery. Our procedures are performed on an outpatient basis using a small, muscle-sparing incision, which results in a shorter recovery time and less surgical scarring.^

At Laser Spine Institute, our procedures have helped more than 75,000 patients get their lives back from chronic neck or back symptoms, such as neurogenic claudication. Reach out to our dedicated team today to receive a no-cost MRI review* that will determine if you may be a potential candidate for one of our minimally invasive spine procedures.