Foraminal narrowing is a condition that affects the foraminal canals within the spine. Each foraminal canal is located on either side of a vertebra and acts as a pathway for nerve roots to leave the spinal cord and travel out to the body. When foraminal narrowing occurs, a nerve root can become pinched and painful symptoms can develop.
Understanding what to do when these symptoms develop will help you find treatment before your pain becomes debilitating. Many times, foraminal narrowing can be treated conservatively, especially if it is caught early in the development stages. However, some patients may require surgery to treat the condition. Read the following article to learn about what method will help you find lasting relief for your foraminal narrowing symptoms.
Step one: identify your foraminal narrowing symptoms
The first thing to do when you think you might have foraminal narrowing is to identify the symptoms of this condition so you know whether or not you should schedule an appointment with your doctor. While symptoms of foraminal narrowing vary from patient to patient, the most common symptoms include:
- Muscle weakness
- Sharp pain during certain movement
- Tingling or numbness in the extremities
- Burning sensations
If you begin to feel the symptoms of foraminal narrowing, schedule an appointment with your doctor to discuss treatment options.
Step two: identify the cause of your foraminal narrowing
Before you and your doctor can discuss foraminal narrowing treatments, you must identify the cause of your condition. For example, if your foraminal narrowing is caused by a herniated disc protruding into the foraminal canal, the treatment should be focused on the herniated disc. Your doctor will perform physical and imaging tests to determine the cause of your condition. Some of the common causes include:
- Herniated disc
- Bulging disc
- Bone spur
- Spinal arthritis
- Spine degeneration
Once your doctor diagnoses the cause of your foraminal narrowing, you can begin a treatment plan for pain relief.
Step three: begin foraminal narrowing treatment
Treatment for foraminal narrowing often begins conservatively with one or more of the following nonsurgical methods:
- Pain medication
- Physical therapy
- Weight management
- Hot and cold compresses
- Corticosteroid injections
If these treatments are not effective after several weeks or months, surgery may be recommended to treat foraminal narrowing. If this is the case for you, contact USA Spine Care. We offer minimally invasive spine surgery as a safer and effective alternative to traditional open neck and back surgery.^ To date, our minimally invasive procedures have helped more than 75,000 patients find relief from chronic neck and back pain.
At USA Spine Care, our foraminal narrowing decompression procedures are performed through a less than 1-inch incision that does not disrupt the muscles and ligaments near the spine in order to relieve the pressure on the nerve. To find out if you’re a candidate for one of our minimally invasive procedures, reach out to our dedicated team today and request a no-cost MRI review.*
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