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Understanding Lumbar Spinal Stenosis and How It Is Treated

Last updated 2 years ago

There is good news for patients suffering from lumbar spinal stenosis, as spine specialists are advancing new orthopaedic treatment options that can provide relief for painful symptoms. There are a number of problems associated with lumbar spinal stenosis, including lower back pain, leg pain, buttock pain, and tingling or numbness. Continue reading to learn more about this condition and how it can be treated.

• What Lumbar Spinal Stenosis Is
Lumbar spinal stenosis is a narrowing of the spinal canal in the lower back, or lumbar area. This is caused by the degeneration of the vertebrae, muscles, and ligaments that comprise the spinal column. As the spinal canal narrows, nerves in the lower back become compressed, resulting in pain and discomfort.

• Who Lumbar Spinal Stenosis Affects
This condition is most common in people over 50, especially those with osteoarthritis. It is also known to sometimes be an inherited condition, as a birth defect can result in a smaller-than-usual spinal column. Lumbar spinal stenosis can lead to serious complications such as severe weakness or paralysis.

• What Treatment Options Are Available
Medications such as anti-depressants, anti-seizure drugs, and pain relievers can help ease the discomfort caused by lumbar spinal stenosis, but other options, such as physical therapy, can give better long-term results. Specific exercises can help reduce pain, build up endurance, and maintain spinal flexibility. Steroidal injections can help reduce inflammation and relieve pain, but they should only be administered a few times a year. Surgery is also an option for some patients, but it is not always effective and carries certain risks.

A new, minimally invasive treatment offers symptom relief with no bone or soft tissue removal. Known as X-STOP® Interspinous Process Decompression (X-STOP IPD), this procedure limits the extension of the lumbar spine and keeps the spinal canal open. X-STOP IPD treatment takes about 45 to 90 minutes and boasts a minimal recovery time.

At Suburban Orthopaedics in Bartlett, we offer many different treatment options for lumbar spinal stenosis, including physical therapy and X-STOP IPD. To find out more about the pain management services that we provide, call (888) 876-0117.


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