Have you been suffering for years from a nagging pain in either your neck, shoulders or legs? You may be suffering from a condition known as cervical spinal stenosis. To help understand the causes and treatments of this type of pain, Silver Cross Hospital is offering a free program on Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2014.
Join Dr. Thomas Hurley, neurosurgeon, for a discussion on minimally invasive treatments available for cervical spinal stenosis—a common problem in people over age 50. This free lecture – Cervical Spinal Stenosis - will be held in the Silver Cross Hospital Conference Center, 1890 Silver Cross Blvd., Pavilion A, New Lenox at 6:30 p.m. Register to attend online or call 1-888-660-HEAL (4325).
“Spinal stenosis is a narrowing of the spinal canal causing pressure on the spinal cord and/or nerves,” said Dr. Hurley. These changes might create minor aches in some patients, although in more severe cases, the pain can significantly impact a person’s quality of life. So to avoid the pain from getting worse, patients need to seek medical attention.”
Symptoms of Cervical Spinal Stenosis
Many people older than 50 years of age have some narrowing of the spinal canal but do not have symptoms. Cervical spinal stenosis does not cause symptoms unless the spinal cord or nerves becomes squeezed. Symptoms usually develop slowly over a long period of time and may include:
- Stiffness, pain, numbness, or weakness in the neck, shoulders, legs, arms, or hands.
- Balance and coordination problems, such as shuffling or tripping while walking.
- Loss of bowel or bladder control (incontinence).
How is Spinal Stenosis Treated?
Spinal stenosis can be treated several ways. Treatment options include:
Changes in posture. People with spinal stenosis may find that flexing the spine by leaning forward while walking relieves their symptoms.
Medications. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications such as aspirin or ibuprofen may help relieve symptoms.
Surgery. If other treatments do not ease the pain, surgery may be recommended to relieve the pressure on affected nerves.
“The best way to develop a treatment plan is to diagnose the severity of Spinal Stenosis. With so many innovative treatments available today, patients can learn the best options with a physician visit,” says Dr. Hurley.