The spinal cord is a critical part of your body, housing special nerve fibers that send and receive messages from the brain. This connection allows the brain to control the rest of your body, including movement and the function of your organs. If you have a common spinal issue, like degenerative disc disease, spinal stenosis or other spinal conditions, some of the best ways to treat your condition may include:
Many back pain and spinal cord injury patients respond effectively to nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, often helping to relieve pain, relieve swelling, and temporarily control muscle spasms. Talk to your doctor about the different medications safe for your condition.
Epidural injections or other injections overseen by a medical professional may be used to help alleviate symptoms associated with spinal cord conditions. Medication like a steroid is inserted directly into areas around nerve roots. Injections can help reduce inflammation and pain that extends to the limbs. Monitored by a doctor, a typical injection regimen includes three injections over a course of several weeks.
Physical therapists may be part of the medical team involved in treating your spinal cord condition. Physical therapy includes exercises that are designed to strengthen the patient’s back, abdomen and leg muscles, along with inactive therapy. Inactive therapy involves the use of heat or ice packs, electric stimulation, ultrasound and massage. The exercises help to relax tight muscles and ease pain and discomfort. Typical exercises include special stretches and exercised designed to make the patient more flexible and make the patient stronger. A physical therapist may also help teach a patient how to perform activities in a way that will not cause further harm.
For many individuals, only surgery can help alleviate some of the symptoms associated with spinal cord conditions. They may try some of the other treatment methods discussed above, but may soon come to realize that these conservative treatment options simply do not provide the needed relief. Surgery may involve removing bone spurs and making the space between vertebrae or the neuroforamen wider. In other situations, different procedures may be completed to relieve spinal pressure on the spinal cord or nerve roots, repair fractured vertebrae or fuse vertebrae together.
A surgeon may determine the appropriate form of surgery based on the type of spinal cord condition, location of the pain or damage and its cause. Sometimes, a surgeon may complete open neck and back surgery in a hospital setting. In other situations, minimally invasive surgery may be offered as an alternative to surgery that results in large incisions, long recovery times and extensive scarring.
At Spine Solutions, our experienced and knowledgeable staff will assess your particular situation and offer you appropriate treatment options to choose from. We offer minimally invasive outpatient spinal surgery as an alternative to other treatment options so that if surgery is necessary, its impact on your life is reduced.