Spinal stenosis is the narrowing of the spine in the space between the vertebrae, the canal in the middle of the spine, or where the nerves branch from the spine. There are four major causes of this condition, the top of which is aging.
As the body ages, the pressure and stress that the spine has undergone over the course of its lifetime can lead to spinal stenosis. Bone spurs, a broadening of tissue that supports the spine, and the joints and bones growing bigger can all lead to this circumstance. Another issue with the aging of the spine is the loss of tissue between the disks themselves.
The second most prevalent cause of this condition is arthritis. Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis, and can degrade the tissue in the joints that keeps bones stabilized. It also can cause bone spurs, and most often occurs in middle aged to older individuals.
Rheumatoid arthritis can also be a factor, as it can also cause serious damage to the joints. Having a predisposition to spinal stenosis is also a leading cause, which could be any number of circumstances, such as scoliosis, or having been born with smaller spine canal than normal.
The fourth leading cause would make up other conditions, such as a tumor, injury or Paget’s disease.
The major concern with this disease is the degeneration of the spine. Frequently, this condition can cause pain that travels down the legs, along with numbness, weakness, and lower back pain. In most cases, the pain worsens the longer someone stands and it usually lessens with rest and leaning forward. The two most common areas to be affected are the neck and lower back.
Thankfully, there are some actions that can be taken to help prevent this disease. Regular exercise can help to keep muscles strong and flexible, and knowing if anyone in your family has suffered from the same condition can help medical professionals to plan in advance for keeping you healthy.
Weight loss can also help to decelerate the progress of the disease. Furthermore, there are treatments that can be quite effective without having to resort to surgery. Medications to reduce swelling, physical therapy, and restricting activity can all be elements to help spinal stenosis. However, it’s important to know that if spinal stenosis has been complicated by arthritis, there could be eventual nerve damage if left untreated, so it’s important to consult with a professional, such as those found at www.manhattanptandpain.com, as soon as possible.