Radiating leg pain is a symptom you might have with lumbar spinal stenosis in Huntington. The frustrating spinal condition happens when your spinal canal narrows, minimizing the passage for your nerves and backbone. Since spinal stenosis occurs in different parts of your spine, the medical expert will diagnose the condition depending on the part of your spine it affects. Are you suffering from lumbar spinal stenosis? If yes, George Kakoulides, MD, can help.
What causes lumbar spinal stenosis?
You are likely to suffer from lumbar spinal stenosis when the open spaces between your spine narrow, squeezing your spinal canal. The most common causes include:
Bone spurs (bone overgrowth). Development of bone spurs likely to result from wear and tear, especially with conditions like osteoarthritis, might prompt the bones to extend into your spinal canal. Bone ailments like Paget’s disease affecting adults might also force bones to grow into your spinal canal.
Thick ligaments. Your vertebrae have strong cords that help keep the bones together in position. Unfortunately, the ligaments might thicken over time, extending into your spine.
- Disc herniation. Discs act as your vertebrae’s shock absorbers. However, the soft cushions dry out as you age, causing cracks on the exterior parts of the disc. The escaping soft material from the disc’s interior might push on your nerves or spine, resulting in painful symptoms.
Spinal injuries. Injuries that result from trauma or accidents can dislocate or fracture your spinal bones. The fragments from the injury might damage contents like nerves in your canal, resulting in spinal stenosis. Additionally, post-op side effects like swelling after a back procedure can exert pressure on your nerves and spinal cord.
Spinal tumors. Abnormal lesions or growths forming inside the membranes covering your spinal cord or on different areas of your spinal cord might narrow your canal, causing you pain.
How can you manage pain with lumbar stenosis?
A significant percentage of individuals with lumbar spinal stenosis know how to manage the condition at home. Your primary physician can recommend several approaches to help you manage back pain resulting from spinal lumbar stenosis. The strategies include:
Icing your lower back after exercising is a necessary and effective treatment for spinal stenosis. The therapy numbs your treatment area, giving you temporary relief.
Heating tensed muscles from spinal stenosis relaxes them, thus stimulating circulation. As a result, the blood stimulation enhances and accelerates your healing process. The healthcare provider might suggest heat wraps, heating pads, and water bottles to help ease muscle tension. Common lumbar stenosis symptoms likely to benefit from heat therapy include leg pain, back pain, and sciatica.
Pain relievers and massages
Applying topical creams or gels on the treatment area help relieve pain with ingredients like menthol and capsaicin. Besides topical creams, your loved one or masseuse can massage the painful areas to relax the sore muscles. However, you should consult your healthcare provider when you experience severe back pain before opting for massage therapy for advice.
Dealing with lumbar spinal stenosis-related pain can be challenging. Severe and progressive symptoms from the condition can interfere with your life. Contact your doctor to know your options with the disabling spine condition.