Spinal stenosis diagnoses and treatments from Laser Spine Institute in Tampa have helped thousands of people find relief
Spinal stenosis is the narrowing of the nerve pathways in the spine that is generally caused by other spine conditions, such as bulging discs, bone spurs or arthritis. Though the narrowing of the spinal canal does not cause symptoms on its own, pain and discomfort can be experienced if a nerve root in the spinal canal is compressed as the canal narrows.
At Laser Spine Institute, we understand the pain and frustration you are feeling due to the chronic pain caused by your spinal stenosis. If left untreated, this pain can cause you to lose the ability to complete daily tasks and activities, and ultimately experience a decrease in your quality of life. Our goal is to help you recapture your life by offering you the information and resources to find pain relief. We encourage you to consult your physician or one of our spine specialists about your pain and symptoms to determine the best course of action for your treatment.
How spinal stenosis is diagnosed
If your unexplained neck or back pain persists after several days, contact your physician to obtain a definitive diagnosis. Your appointment will probably start with an open discussion of your symptoms, medical history and lifestyle. Then, your physician will likely conduct a physical examination in which he or she will text your range of motion. Once spinal stenosis is suspected, an MRI, CT scan or X-ray may be ordered to pinpoint the exact location, cause and severity of your spinal stenosis.
Common causes of spinal stenosis
For some patients, spinal stenosis develops as part of the natural aging process, as degenerative changes in the spine associated with aging may result in a reduction of space within the spinal canal. For others, spinal stenosis develops as a result of a different spinal condition that presses into the open space of the spinal canal, such as:
- Bulging disc
- Bone spur
- Degenerative disc disease
- Herniated disc
Spinal stenosis symptoms
Though spinal stenosis is not always symptomatic, when the narrowing of the spinal canal becomes extreme, the spinal cord and surrounding nerve roots can be compressed. This can lead to a number of symptoms such as:
- Difficulty balancing
- Trouble standing or walking without pain
- Pain in a single area
- Radiating numbness
- Radiating tingling
- Radiating pain
- Muscle weakness
We offer several minimally invasive treatment spine surgery that is a safer and effective alternative to traditional open back surgery.^ Our minimally invasive surgery is designed to treat spinal stenosis and other spine conditions at the source of the problem instead of just treating the resulting symptoms. Consult your physician or our Care Team to learn more about the advantages of Laser Spine Institute and the treatment options available to you.
Conservative and alternative treatments
If you are just beginning to find treatments for your spinal stenosis pain, you should try to start with conservative, nonsurgical therapy. Many patients can find lasting relief for spinal stenosis pain without having to undergo any type of spine surgery. Ask your physician to create a conservative treatment regimen that fits your needs and your lifestyle. You should undergo conservative treatment for several months before determining if your spine condition is getting better or worse. Common methods of conservative treatment for spinal stenosis include pain medication, epidural steroid injections, physical therapy, stretching, low-impact exercises and hot/cold compresses.
Additionally, alternative methods, which focus on promoting the body’s natural healing process, have also been reported by some patients as being successful in treating spinal stenosis. These methods man include acupuncture, herbal supplements, massage, chiropractic manipulation, Pilates and yoga. Your doctor can help you determine if these treatments will be effective in reducing your pain.
Spinal stenosis surgery
If all conservative options have been exhausted, surgery may become the best option to alleviate your pain and symptoms. Our minimally invasive procedures at Laser Spine Institute Tampa include:
- Laminotomy — allows the surgeon to open the narrowed area by removing material that is constricting the spinal cord
- Decompression with Interlaminar Stabilization® device — the surgeon decompresses the stenosis, while inserting the device to add stability
- Anterior cervical discectomy fusion (ACDF) — during this procedure the Laser Spine Institute surgeon will remove the disc material that is causing the narrowing, while fusing the area to prevent future movement
- Transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF) — allows the surgeon to remove the necessary disc material, opening the narrowing, while heightening the area to release additional pressure and fusing the area
- Lateral lumbar interbody fusion — allows the surgeon to alleviate the stenosis by removing the damaged disc and fusing the adjacent vertebrae
For more information regarding spinal stenosis procedures at our Tampa center, contact Laser Spine Institute today. Our caring and dedicated team can help you get a no-cost MRI review* to determine if you are a potential candidate for one of our procedures.