Illinois Spine & Scoliosis Center
Spine Surgeons & Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation located in Homer Glen, IL & Woodridge, IL
Spinal stenosis is a spine condition that may cause neck or back pain that worsens over time. Though most people get relief from spinal stenosis symptoms with medical care, some benefit from spine surgery. At Illinois Spine and Scoliosis Center, with offices in Homer Glen and Woodridge, Illinois, the spine experts offer both medical and surgical treatment options. For comprehensive management of spinal stenosis, call the office nearest you or request an appointment online today.
Spinal Stenosis Q & A
What is spinal stenosis?
Spinal stenosis means you have a narrowing of the space in your spinal canal. Your spine has a series of small bones known as vertebrae, each separated by an intervertebral disc.
In addition to keeping you upright, your spinal bones protect your spinal cord and serve as exit points for the spinal nerves that go to the rest of your body.
Narrowing of the space in your spinal canal may irritate, pinch, or compress the spinal cord or the spinal nerves, causing pain symptoms.
Spinal stenosis may affect any part of your spine but most often occurs in the lumbar spine (lower back) or cervical spine (neck).
What are the symptoms of spinal stenosis?
Spinal stenosis symptoms vary and depend on the nerves affected and the severity of the narrowing. Symptoms usually start gradually and worsen over time.
Common spinal stenosis symptoms include:
- Lower back or neck pain
- Tingling, numbness, or burning that radiates into the arms or legs
- Leg muscle weakness
- Poor balance and difficulty walking
- Loss of bowel or bladder control
- Sciatica (compression of the sciatic nerve)
- Radiculopathy (pinching of a spinal nerve root)
Not everyone with spinal stenosis has symptoms.
How is spinal stenosis diagnosed?
To diagnose spinal stenosis, your provider reviews your symptoms and medical history and performs a physical exam. They also run imaging tests, such as X-rays, MRIs, or CT scans, to find the location of your spinal stenosis and assess the severity of the narrowing.
How is spinal stenosis treated?
Illinois Spine and Scoliosis Center takes a patient-centered approach to care. Treatment for spinal stenosis depends on the severity of your symptoms and the location of the narrowing.
When possible, your provider takes a non-surgical approach to managing spinal stenosis, providing medications, physical therapy, spinal injections, and regenerative medicine treatments to ease pain and improve spine health and function.
However, if your spinal stenosis causes severe symptoms that affect your quality of life, your provider may recommend spine surgery. Illinois Spine and Scoliosis Center is the referral center for complex adult and pediatric spine surgical needs.
For spinal stenosis, the spine surgeon uses minimally invasive surgery when possible, so you get the best outcomes with less pain and a shorter recovery. Examples of spine surgery your surgeon may perform for spinal stenosis include:
- Spinal fusion — joining two or more vertebral bones together
- Laminectomy — removing the lamina portion of the vertebrae
- Laminotomy — removing a portion of the lamina
- Foraminotomy — removal of the foramen, where spinal nerves exit
Illinois Spine and Scoliosis Center offers many treatment options for spinal stenosis. Schedule an appointment by calling the office or booking one online today.
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