Spinal Stenosis is basically the narrowing of the spaces in the spine that further causes pressure on the spinal cord as well as nerves. It has been observed that nearly 75% of cases, mainly occur in the low back that requires lumbar spine treatment. The type of spinal stenosis treatments received for this problem may vary, as it totally depends on the location of the stenosis and the severity of your signs as well as symptoms. The Spinal Stenosis can be treated without surgery and in fact, less than 5% of patients with a spinal disorder ever require spine surgery.
There are several non-surgical spinal stenosis treatments your spine physician may recommend to treat your spinal stenosis. Often, treatment combines more than one type of therapy. For example, medication may be combined with physical therapy. Let's review a few of the non-surgical therapies one by one.
1. Medication: Sometimes, medications are prescribed by spine specialists to control the pain associated with spinal stenosis. Some of the common medicines prescribed are mentioned below:
NSAIDs (Onsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs that help to ease the pain and reduce the inflammation. These mainly include ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) and naproxen (Aleve), that are easily available without prescription.
· Muscle relaxants help to calm the muscle spasms that occasionally occur and these medicines includes cyclobenzaprine (Amrix, Fexmid).
· Antidepressants like amitriptyline are recommended to be given as tricyclic nightly doses to ease chronic the pain.
· Anti-seizure drugs are commonly used to reduce pain caused by damaged nerves and these medicines include names like gabapentin (Neurontin, Gralise, Horizant) and pregabalin (Lyrica).
2. Syringe VialsInjections: The most common type of injection used to help alleviate the symptoms of spinal stenosis is an epidural injection. This type of injection places medication (usually a steroid) into the space that surrounds specific nerve roots (the epidural space). The medication helps to reduce inflammation and acute pain that radiates into the arms or legs. Usually a course of three injections is given over a period of several weeks.
3. Physical therapy (PT): PT usually combines inactive therapy and therapeutic exercise. Inactive therapy includes heat or ice packs, ultrasound, electrical stimulation, and massage. These treatments help to ready the patient for active therapy by relaxing tight muscles and easing pain or discomfort. Therapeutic exercise includes stretching and prescribed exercises to help stabilize the spine, build strength and endurance, as well as the increase flexibility.