Spinal stenosis occurs when the spinal cord in the neck (cervical spine) or the spinal nerve roots in the lower back (lumbar spine) are compressed. Symptoms of lumbar stenosis often include leg pain (sciatica) and leg tingling, weakness, or numbness. Arm pain is a typical symptom of cervical spinal stenosis. For cervical spinal stenosis with myelopathy, difficulty with coordination often occurs.

Stenosis treatment may include non-surgical options (exercise, anti-inflammatory medication, epidural injections, and activity modification) or back surgery.

Nonsurgical treatments including physical therapy, medications, and/or injections are typically tried first to relieve the symptoms of central canal stenosis. In severe cases, surgery may be recommended.

At-home pain management of symptoms from lumbar spinal stenosis may include heat/ice therapy, massage therapy, topical pain relievers and over-the-counter medications.

When nonsurgical treatments have failed to manage the pain, tingling, numbness, and/or weakness caused by spinal stenosis, surgery may be considered. Learn about the various surgical options available.

Signs and symptoms of spinal stenosis can vary depending on its location and severity. Getting an accurate diagnosis is needed to rule out other potential causes of pain and/or neurological deficits.
Review spinal stenosis treatment options including exercise, activity modification, epidural injections, medication and spinal stenosis surgery.
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