Spinal stenosis refers to abnormal narrowing of a bone channel related to the spinal cords or nerves. Some people have a perfect form, but a lot of people become vulnerable to spinal stenosis related discomforts due to a degenerative cascade. A good number of people may not experience any narrowing effects while many will have to deal with radiating pain because of the aging process. In addition to pain, patients experience numbness and weakness.
What are the most popular spinal stenosis treatment options?
Modification of the activities
Certain activities worsen the symptoms of spinal stenosis. That is why doctors recommend eliminating activities that aggravate the condition of the spine. If you are suffering from lumbar stenosis, you can be more comfortable with flexed forward movements. For instance; the most commonly advocated modification activity walking while bending over. Other activities include sitting in a recliner in place of sitting on a chair with straight back position, stationary biking by leaning forward on the handlebars in place of walking as a part of the exercise and leaning on a walker in place of walking upright. These types of modification activities offer great relief for the patients and help them control the pain and other discomforts.
Performing the right exercises
Every spinal stenosis treatment program includes exercise and physical therapy and this aspect suggests that how effective exercises are. You cannot describe spinal stenosis exercises as a cure, but it is very critical for you to stay active. They make you more tolerant to this health condition, and you get better protection against getting debilitated due to inactivity. Best exercise programs incorporate a combination of stability, endurance, strengthening and range of motion related exercises to offer maximum relief. Proper exercises improve the blood flow to the back, and they bring the much-needed oxygen and nutrients to the affected area. Another benefit of exercises is that they strengthen the muscles around the spine to eliminate the pressure on the bones. Other advantages include better flexibility and healthy weight management and these aspects always help you control the discomforts associated with spinal stenosis.
Physiotherapy offers excellent results
Physiotherapy is one of the best spinal stenosis treatment options. Several physicals recommend a supervised physical therapy program. After having attended physical therapy sessions under the supervision of an expert, people can shift to their own exercise program. Physiotherapy teaches you how to begin slowly and gradually build strength and tolerance. You can reduce pain, create a personalized workout program and learn how to protect the joint and bone structure with the help of a physiotherapist. These professionals make use of different methods including electrical muscle stimulation, applying icepack and the utilization of ultrasound to offer relief from pain. The McKenzie method is a popular one among many physiotherapists, and dynamic lumbar stabilization is another method commonly used in physiotherapy. It is advisable to consult an experienced physiotherapist because incorrect practices can aggravate the condition easily.
Medications provide instant relief
If you want to get instant relief from pain associated with spinal stenosis, anti-inflammatory medications like ibuprofen and aspirin can be taken. When you have to deal with severe episodes of pain, doctors recommend a short-term course of narcotic medication. Nerve desensitizing medications offer good benefits and doctors also advocate the use of muscle relaxers. Anti-depressant medications are advised to alleviate pain in certain cases. Many people are worried about the side effects associated with medications, and you must consult with your doctor before start taking any medication.
Epidural injections bring temporary relief
A cortisone injection can be taken in the area outside the epidural space. This spinal stenosis treatment provides a temporary relief from the symptoms. The long-term use of these types of injections is always questionable. As far as osteoporosis-related fractures are concerned, corticosteroid injections are not at all a good option. Anyhow, this option is hugely popular, and a lot of physicians recommend epidural injections to their patients.
Surgery is the final and the most rewarding option
Patients, who are dealing with advanced claudication, have to undergo a decompression surgery to address the spinal stenosis symptoms. This surgery is one of the best spinal stenosis treatments. To make the surgery effective, correct diagnosis is needed. Doctors make use of imaging studies to find out the narrowing areas, and this approach brings excellent results. Various types of surgical methods used to address spinal stenosis and they include Laminectomy, Anterior Cervical Discectomy/Corpectomy, Interspinous Process Devices and Facet Replacement or Total Element Replacement. Various research studies show that spinal stenosis surgery is the most rewarding option and most patients regain their mobility and activity level after the surgery. It has been found out that several patients have been enjoying enhanced walking tolerance after the surgery.
These are the most common and effective spinal stenosis treatment options available. You can also find alternative options like chiropractic treatment, acupuncture, and massage therapy.