Spinal Stenosis

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Spinal Stenosis

What is spinal stenosis? Spinal stenosis is a medical diagnosis related to the spine and nerves. This can cause discomfort and other uncomfortable symptoms. ‘Stenosis’ is defined as a narrowing or constriction of the diameter of a bodily passage or orifice.’ Therefore, we can conclude that the spinal stenosis definition is a narrowing or constriction of the spine.


Every individual’s experience with spinal stenosis will vary, including how painful or uncomfortable it may be or how it will affect their quality of life. Some of the more common symptoms of spinal stenosis include:

  • Pain
  • Numbness
  • Weakness
  • Issues with coordination
  • Bowel or bladder dysfunction
  • Pins and needles feeling


These symptoms are often in the neck, lower back, arms, or legs. It may also start in one location, such as the neck, then lead down to other parts of the body. Bowel and bladder issues are typically related to severe spinal stenosis.


Any person can develop spinal stenosis; however, it is more likely to get it at an older age or if you were born with a narrow spinal canal. Most of the causes can be attributed to diagnosis or risks factors that break down or limit the tissues in the spine, therefore creating pressure and barriers to normal spinal function.

There are a few other contributing factors and causes:

  • Arthritis
  • Fractures
  • Inherited conditions, such as scoliosis
  • A herniated disk
  • Slipped vertebras
  • Tumors in the spine
  • Calcium build-up
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Ligament thickening


To effectively treat your spinal stenosis, you must complete a formal diagnosis to see exactly where and what is affected. Often, you will find spinal stenosis on MRI, X-rays, or other imaging that physicians will complete. There are many ways to manage this condition effectively, some of which can be completed at home if not severe. Some options include:

  • Using heat
  • Exercise if your physician recommends it
  • Apply cold compresses if you heat does not help
  • Oral medications that can assist with pain management
  • Physical therapy
In severe cases, spinal stenosis surgery may be required. Spinal stenosis physical therapy can help you establish a routine to strengthen your spine and muscles. Work with your physician to establish the best route to treat your spinal stenosis safely and effectively.

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