spinalstenosis

What is Spinal stenosis?


Spinal stenosis may be caused by:Arthritis involving the spine, usually in middle-aged or elderly people; Herniated or slipped disk; Injury that causes pressure on the nerve roots or the spinal cord itself; Defect in the spine that was present from birth (congenital defect); Tumors in the spine; Paget's disease of bone; Achondroplasia

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Also known as stenosis, spinal, pseudo-claudication, Spinal Stenoses
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Spinal stenosis

The spinal canal is formed by the openings of a series of bones (vertebrae) stacked on top of each other.

Spinal stenosis

Your spine, or backbone, protects your spinal cord and allows you to stand and bend. Spinal stenosis causes narrowing in your spine. The narrowing can occur at the center of your spine, in the canals branching off your spine and/or between the vertebrae, the bones of the spine. The narrowing puts pressure on your nerves and spinal cord and can cause pain. Spinal stenosis occurs mostly in people older than 50. Younger people with a spine injury or a narrow spinal canal are also at risk. Diseases such as arthritis and scoliosis can cause spinal stenosis, too. Symptoms might appear gradually or not at all. They include pain in your neck or back, numbness, weakness or pain in your arms or legs, and foot problems. Treatments include medications, physical therapy, braces and surgery.

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Spinal stenosis

Spinal stenosis is a narrowing of one or more areas in your spine most often in your upper or lower back. This narrowing can put pressure on your spinal cord or on the nerves that branch out from the compressed areas.

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Lumbar Spinal Stenosis

Lumbar (LUM-bahr) spinal (SPI-nal) stenosis (ste-NO-sis) is a narrowing of the spinal canal in the lower back. The spinal canal runs in the middle of the spine and contains the spinal cord. Your spine is made up of many vertebrae (back bones) stacked on one another. Between each bone is a disc which serves as cushion. The spinal cord is where nerves that carry messages from your brain go to the rest of the body. When lumbar spinal stenosis happens, the nerves that go to the legs may be squeezed. With treatment, more serious problems of lumbar spinal stenosis may be prevented and your quality of life improved.

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Pyloric stenosis

Most babies spit up at least occasionally, and it's usually nothing to worry about. Sometimes, however, forceful spitting up is a sign of a more serious condition known as pyloric stenosis.

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Pyloric stenosis

Pyloric stenosis is a narrowing of the pylorus, the opening from the stomach into the small intestine.

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Mitral valve stenosis

Mitral valve stenosis or mitral stenosis is a condition in which the heart's mitral valve is narrowed (stenotic). This narrowing blocks the valve from opening properly, obstructing blood flow through your heart and from your heart to the rest of your body. Mitral valve stenosis can make you tired and short of breath, among other problems.

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Aortic valve stenosis

Aortic valve stenosis or aortic stenosis occurs when the heart's aortic valve narrows. This narrowing prevents the valve from opening fully, which obstructs blood flow from your heart into your aorta and onward to the rest of your body.

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Mitral stenosis

Mitral (MI-trul) stenosis (sten-O-sis) is also called "MS". It is a disease of the mitral valve. The mitral valve is one of the doors in the heart. MS is a condition where the two leaflets of the mitral valve get thicker and stiffer. The two small leaflets of the mitral valve come from the front and back of the valve and meet in the middle. "Stenosis" means narrow or tight. A stenosis causes the valve opening to get smaller. A smaller opening makes it harder for blood to flow through the heart.

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Contents

Complications
Complications of spinal stenosis may include: Loss of feeling. Depending on which nerves are compressed, spinal stenosis may cause a loss of feeling in your arms, hands, feet or legs. As a result, cuts or wounds may become seriously infected because you're not aware of them. Loss of bladder or bowel control. In addition, spinal stenosis sometimes interferes with bowel or bladder function a problem that can affect your quality of life. Degenerative changes. Although treatment can relieve symptoms of spinal stenosis, it doesn't stop degenerative changes. Some of these changes, such as muscle atrophy, may be permanent, even after the pressure is relieved.

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Exams and Tests
During the physical exam, your doctor will try to pinpoint the location of the pain and figure out how it affects your movement. You will be asked to:Sit, stand, and walk. While you walk, your doctor may ask you to try walking on your toes and then your heels.; Bend forward, backward, and sideways.; Lift your legs straight up while lying down. If the pain is worse when you do this, you may have sciatica, especially if you also feel numbness or tingling in one of your legs.; EMG ; Spinal MRI or spinal CT scan; X-ray of the spine

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Medical advice
Call your health care provider if you have symptoms of spinal stenosis.

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Outlook (Prognosis)
Many people with spinal stenosis are able to carry on active lifestyles for many years with the condition. Some change in activities or work may be needed.

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Possible Complications
Injury can occur to the legs or feet due to lack of sensation. Infections may get worse because you may not feel the pain related to them. Changes caused by nerve compression may be permanent, even if the pressure is relieved.

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Prevention
You can't always prevent age-related changes in your back, but the following steps can help keep your spine and joints as healthy as possible: Exercise regularly. This helps maintain strength and flexibility in your spine, joints and ligaments. For the best results, combine aerobic activities such as walking and biking with weight training and stretching. Toning and stretching before exercise can help reduce wear and tear on your back. It also reduces your risk of injury by warming up your muscles and increasing your flexibility. Strength training can make your arms, legs and abdominal muscles stronger, which takes stress off your back. If you're not used to exercise, start out gradually...

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Risk factors
Age is the main known risk factor for spinal stenosis. Your risk of this condition increases after age 50.

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Symptoms
Often, symptoms will be present and gradually worsen over time. Most often, symptoms will be on one side of the body or the other.

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Tests and diagnosis
Spinal stenosis can be difficult to diagnose because its signs and symptoms are often intermittent and because they resemble those of many age-related conditions. To help diagnose spinal stenosis and rule out other disorders, your doctor will ask about your medical history and perform a physical exam that may include checking your peripheral pulses, range of motion and leg reflexes.

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Treatments and drugs
Many people with spinal stenosis are effectively treated with conservative measures. But if you have disabling pain or your ability to walk is severely impaired, your doctor may recommend spinal surgery. Acute loss of bowel or bladder function is usually considered a medical emergency and requires immediate surgical intervention.

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