Spinal Canal Stenosis

The narrowing of the spinal canal is called spinal canal stenosis. It commonly happens in the part of the spine present in the neck and lower back region.

Spinal Canal Stenosis Symptoms

Depending on the part of the spine being affected, spinal canal stenosis symptoms usually comprise:

  • Back pain
  • Neck pain
  • Pain/cramps in legs, difficulty in walking & maintaining balance
  • Intense pain experienced after walking/standing for extended periods
  • Tingling sensation, numbness & weakness in the arms, hands & legs
  • Sciatica (pain originating from buttocks & extending down legs & feet)
  • Bladder or bowel-related issues

Spinal canal stenosis symptoms generally worsen over a period of time, making quick diagnosis and treatment very important. Having said that, in most cases, no symptoms are experienced by the person with spinal canal stenosis.

Spinal Canal Stenosis Causes

Spinal canal stenosis causes are numerous and varied in nature. They include:

  • Age-related wear & tear in the spine
  • Osteoarthritis causing bone spurs
  • Spinal discs herniation
  • Thick & stiff ligaments getting into the spinal canal
  • Injury-inflicted trauma to spine, causing bones to crack & shift out of position
  • Inflammation of spinal tissue after a back surgery
  • Small spinal canal since birth (congenital spinal stenosis)
  • Tumors or cysts in the spinal canal (in rare cases)

Spinal Canal Stenosis Diagnosis

Like with most spinal disorders, a physical examination and enquiry about your medical history & symptoms are conducted. Later on, one or multiple imaging scans are carried out to come to an accurate diagnosis:

  • X-rays (To look for bone changes causing the narrowing of the spinal canal)
  • MRI (To check for damage to spinal disks & ligaments or detect any tumors present)
  • CT Scan or CT Myelogram (To diagnose herniated disks, bone spurs & tumors)

Spinal Canal Stenosis Treatment

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