Spinal Stenosis, one of the Most Common Spinal Conditions
Spinal stenosis is a condition characterized by pain, tingling and numbness in the extremities caused by a narrowing, or constriction of the spinal canal. A common problem, spinal stenosis is one of the most often-heard terms related to spinal conditions. The narrowing of the spinal canal can exert pressure on the nerves branching out from the spine, and sometimes on the spinal cord itself.
Spinal stenosis occurs in two forms, defined by the region of the spine affected: lumbar spinal stenosis occurs in the lumbar, or lower region of the back; and cervical spinal stenosis, which affects the cervical, or neck region. Lumbar spinal stenosis is the more common form. The symptoms of spinal stenosis develop in parts of the body associated with the affected nerves.
Core Issues of Spinal Stenosis Require Attention
The causes of spinal stenosis can be traced to several components of spinal anatomy, including the discs between the vertebrae, the facet joints that connect the vertebrae to each other, and the spinal cord. However, most cases of spinal stenosis occur for unknown reason. The narrowing of the spinal canal may result from abnormal bone growth, tissue growth, or the two in tandem. Over time, the space between the nerve roots, spinal cord and vertebrae decreases, putting pressure on the spinal nerves. In the less common hereditary form of spinal stenosis, the diameter of the spinal canal is unnaturally small from birth. A healthy lifestyle including exercise, good nutrition and maintaining proper weight can help prevent spinal stenosis. For those affected, options for spinal stenosis treatment include physical therapy, spinal stenosis exercises that can relieve pressure on the spinal cord, and medication to reduce pain and inflammation.
Surgery for spinal stenosis can provide relief in extreme cases. Depending on your underlying condition and other factors, patients may consider cervical spinal fusion surgery. During a cervical spinal fusion, the damaged intervertebral discs are removed and replaced with bone grafts and the vertebrae are fused together using metal hardware.
Minimally invasive spinal surgery techniques such as endoscopic surgery and laser spinal surgery provide new treatment options. New Jersey Spine Specialists treats patients with spinal stenosis and other spinal disorders from across the country and communities throughout the region, including Short Hills, Union and Bloomfield. If you’re looking for state-of-the-art solutions to this or any spinal problem and you live in Middlesex, Morris, Union Counties or beyond, call or email us today to schedule an appointment with one of the best board certified orthopedic surgeons near you.
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