Arthritis of the spine does not always cause significant pain that requires relief. In fact, many people find that they are able to cope with mild-to-moderate arthritic discomfort as they go about their daily lives. However, spinal arthritis can sometimes cause severe bouts of facet joint pain and inflammation, which are often referred to as flare-ups. Some people need help in getting through these painful episodes, which can be triggered by a number of factors, including stress, repetitive movement, injury, weather changes and weight gain.
While arthritic flare-ups can be very painful and even disabling, the discomfort is usually temporary, and there are several nonsurgical treatment approaches that can be helpful during those times. The best way to find effective relief is to talk with a physician who can provide personalized advice and guidance.
Treatment options for arthritis of the spine
Over-the-counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are often useful for addressing joint pain and inflammation. However, while NSAIDs can be very effective, they are not sufficient or appropriate for everyone. When further arthritis of the spine pain relief is required, some people benefit from:
- A brief period of rest
- Heat therapy
- Ice pack applications
- Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS)
- Prescription-strength NSAIDs and narcotics
Arthritis pain that lasts for more than a few days or continues to worsen despite conservative treatment may be a warning sign of progressive joint damage. These symptoms should be brought to the attention of a physician who can pinpoint the cause and recommend more advanced treatment, such as surgery, if necessary.
Surgical treatment for spinal arthritis
If you’re considering surgery as a way to achieve relief from the pain associated with arthritis of the spine, contact USA Spine Care. Our minimally invasive approach has earned a patient satisfaction score of 98 out of 100.^ We can provide a no-cost MRI review* to help you determine if you are a candidate for our minimally invasive outpatient procedures.