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Spinal stenosis pain

Spinal stenosis pain can originate in the neck or lower back. The symptoms can be extremely disruptive to your normal activities — taking you away from your family, your work and your favorite hobbies. The term stenosis means narrowing, which can be caused in the spinal column by a number of different conditions such as spinal arthritis, thickening of ligaments or a herniated disc. In rare cases, a person can be born with a narrow spinal canal due to heredity, but spinal stenosis is usually caused by age-related changes to the spine.

Symptoms of spinal stenosis

Spinal stenosis does not always cause painful symptoms. If the narrowing occurs without interfering with the spinal cord or a nerve root, the condition can go undiagnosed for years. If you have been diagnosed with stenosis, then it is most likely because one or more of the following painful symptoms sent you to a doctor for treatment:

  • Pain can be a dull ache or a sharp sensation in one location of the neck or back. It can also be felt as tingling or burning that radiates from one spot along the spinal column to other areas of the body, such as the shoulders, hips, buttocks, arms or legs.
  • You may have difficulty walking but will find relief when leaning forward and bracing on an object, such as a walker or shopping cart.
  • Spinal stenosis pain can potentially be chronic, severely limiting work- and leisure-related activities.
  • Pain can be aggravated by motion, such as bending, twisting, standing, walking, or swinging a golf club, or by repetitive motions like heavy lifting.
  • In cases of mild spinal stenosis, pain may persist, but it also may come and go over the course of a few days or a week. It may not stop you from most activities, but it can slow you down.

In addition to pain, spinal stenosis can cause stiffness in the cervical (upper) or in the lumbar (lower) regions of the spine. Spinal stenosis can also cause numbness and tingling in the extremities. Other spinal stenosis symptoms include cramping in the legs or arms and possibly headaches and dizziness.

Stenosis, and the pain that comes with it, can affect any part of the spine, but it more commonly affects the lumbar and cervical regions, with thoracic stenosis being rarer. For example, if your pain or other symptoms are in the neck area and you also have difficulty walking, you may have cervical spinal stenosis.

You have treatment options

If you are dealing with spinal stenosis pain and have been unable to find relief from conservative treatments, contact USA Spine Care to learn more about the minimally invasive spine surgery we perform for this condition. Our outpatient procedures are a safer and effective alternative^ to traditional open spine surgery^ for the decompression of pinched nerves to help you find lasting relief from neck or back pain.

Contact us and we can provide you with a no-cost review* of your MRI to determine if you may be a candidate for one of our procedures.

Learn more today

If you're living with spinal stenosis in the upper spine and searching for relief, reach out to USA Spine Care for help. Our multidisciplinary team is dedicated to helping people develop the right care plan to  reach treatment goals and achieve lasting relief.

Contact us today to learn more. Call toll free 1-866-249-1627.

Spinal Stenosis "Quick Answers"

Depending on the region and severity Spinal stenosis feels like tingling, burning and/or weakness in the hands, arms, neck, lower back or legs. It may also feel like a radiating pain or shooting shock-like pain. Read more in the links below: Spinal Stenosis Spinal Stenosis Overview Defining Spinal Stenosis Researching Spinal Stenosis Learning About Back Stenosis Spinal Stenosis Pathophysiology
The types of spinal stenosis are region based and consist of cervical (neck), thoracic (mid back) and lumbar or lower back. In addition, foraminal stenosis is the narrowing of the foramen. Read more in the links below: Spinal Stenosis of the Neck Cervical Stenosis - Basic Facts Neck Stenosis Causes Neck Stenosis Treatment Central Canal Stenosis Lumbar Spinal Stenosis Spinal Stenosis in the Back
Spinal Stenosis is the narrowing of the spinal canal. This condition, most often located in the Lumbar spine, may be caused by degeneration of the spine, wear and tear, sports injury, & collapsing discs. Read more in the links below. What Causes Spinal Stenosis? Obesity May Lead to a Stenosis Diagnosis Age and its Role in the Development of Spinal Stenosis Spinal Stenosis Causes Identifying Common Causes From Birth Defects to Getting Older Degenerative Conditions Car Accident Injuries
The symptoms of spinal stenosis include tingling or numbness in the extremities, pain and weakness in the neck, back and/or legs. In severe cases bladder, bowel dysfunction/continence. Learn more in the links below: What Are the Symptoms of Spinal Stenosis? Spinal Stenosis Symptoms Spinal Stenosis Diagnosis What Should I Do If I Think I Have Spinal Stenosis? Spinal Stenosis and Hand Pain Recognizing Spinal Stenosis Have You Been Diagnosed? About Your Diagnosis Diagnostic Process Helping Your Physician How a Diagnosis Is Made Arriving at a Diagnosis
Physician specialties that treat spinal stenosis include: Pain management & rehabilitation physicians, spine surgeons, orthopedic specialists & neurosurgeons. Read more about these specialties in the links below: Doctors Who Treat Spinal Stenosis Spinal Decompression Doctors
Patients can expect recovery to last 4-6 weeks in most cases (depending on the complexity of your condition). People who choose minimally invasive spine surgery recover faster and get back to work sooner than those who choose open back surgery. Read more in the links below: Recovery After a Procedure What to Expect Recovery Times

  • Problems from anesthesia.
  • A deep infection in the surgical wound.
  • A skin infection.
  • Blood clots.
  • Nerve injury, including weakness, numbness, or paralysis.
  • Tears in the fibrous tissue that covers the spinal cord and the nerve near the spinal cord. These tears may require more surgery.
  • Trouble passing urine, or loss of bladder or bowel control.
  • Long-term (chronic) pain, which happens after surgery in some cases.
  • The chance that the surgery won't relieve your symptoms. And even if you get better with surgery, there is a chance that you may get new symptoms in the future.
  • Death from problems caused by surgery, but this is rare.

Read more in the links below: Overview of Risk Factors Most Common Risk Factors Obesity & Spinal Stenosis Spinal Stenosis & Arthritis Treating Elderly Patients

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