Spinal Stenosis Treatments

Spinal stenosis can have many symptoms and causes, requiring treatment from physicians who specialize in particular aspects of the condition. Your physician may refer you to specialists such as:

  • Neurosurgeons
  • Neurologists
  • Physical therapists
  • Orthopaedic surgeons
  • Rheumatologists

Nonsurgical options

Spinal stenosis can often be treated with a variety of nonsurgical options, including:

  • Medications to treat swelling and relieve pain
  • Bed rest or other limits in daily activity
  • Physical therapy and exercises
  • Back braces and other orthotics
  • Lifestyle changes, including regular exercise, weight management and an emphasis on good posture

Surgical options

If you experience more serious symptoms of spinal stenosis, such as impairment of movement, incontinence or other problems of your nervous system, your physician may recommend surgery. Common surgical procedures to treat spinal stenosis include:

  • Decompression: Removing the bone and soft tissues of the spine that are pinching nerves, also known as a laminectomy
  • Spinal fusion: Permanently fusing two or more vertebrae together using a piece of bone, usually taken from the hip. Screws and rods may be used to hold the bones together while they mend and speed recovery.