A look at what causes spinal stenosis

Spinal stenosis is described as the narrowing of the spinal canal and it is often one of the most common spine conditions. This condition typically goes unnoticed in patients until a nerve becomes pinched in the narrowing canal. When this happens, symptoms of severe pain and discomfort appear and alert the patient that a spine condition has developed.

If these symptoms are present in your neck or back and last for longer than a few days or a week, you should contact your doctor to determine the cause of your pain. Your doctor can perform the following tests to determine if you have stenosis of the spine and what is causing your spine to narrow:

  • Physical examination
  • Series of questions about your symptoms
  • Medical imaging, such as MRI or CT scan

The information from these tests will be used to diagnose the cause of your stenosis of the spine and the best treatment options for your condition. To learn about the correlation between a degenerative spine condition and spinal stenosis as well as determine what treatment may work best to treat your symptoms, read the following article.

Degenerative spine conditions and spinal stenosis

The most common cause of spinal stenosis is a degenerative spine condition. In fact, spinal stenosis often develops as a result of most spine conditions, such as:

  • Bone spurs (osteophytes)
  • Bulging disc
  • Herniated disc
  • Ligament hardening
  • Spondylolisthesis (vertebral slippage)
  • Degenerative scoliosis

These conditions can cause the discs or vertebrae of the spine to move out of alignment and into the spinal canal, narrowing the space in the spinal canal for the nerve roots to travel. This is why nerves often become pinched when spinal stenosis occurs.

Treatments for stenosis of the spine

Typically, spinal stenosis can be treated through conservative methods of treatment, such as stretching, physical therapy and pain medication. These treatments help to block the pain of the pinched nerve while the damaged parts of the spine are moved back into place. If this is not effective, minimally invasive spine surgery may be your best option for pain relief.

At Laser Spine Institute, we offer a safer and effective alternative to traditional open spine surgery^ to help treat stenosis of the spine. Many cases of moderate stenosis can be treated with a decompression surgery, though some more severe cases may require a stabilization procedure. Contact Laser Spine Institute to learn if our outpatient procedures would be effective in relieving your stenosis of the spine.

Our board-certified surgeons+ treat stenosis of the spine by removing the portion of the spinal anatomy that is causing the spinal canal to narrow and pinching a nerve. The minimally invasive decompression surgery removes a small portion of the damaged disc or vertebra, while our minimally invasive stabilization surgery may remove the entire disc and stabilizes the spine with an artificial disc or bone graft.

Laser Spine Institute is the leader in minimally invasive spine surgery and has helped more than 75,000 patients find relief from chronic neck or back pain. Reach out to our dedicated team today for a no-cost review* of your MRI and to find out if you’re a potential candidate for our stenosis of the spine procedures. We are here to help guide you on your journey to wellness.

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