CANAL NATURE (SPINAL STENOSIS) What is canal narrowing?
The vertebrae are bone structures that protect the spinal cord and structures called nerve fibers. The spinal cord and nerve fibers descend along the canal in the middle of the vertebrae, starting from the lower part of the head. Between the vertebrae there are structures called discs that connect the vertebrae to each other. These discs lose their amount of fluid as age progresses. This may cause the disc's ability to carry weight decrease and harden and shift from its location to the spinal canal, causing narrowing of the canal diameter. Another cause of spinal stenosis is the growth of the facet joints at the back of the vertebrae.
What are the symptoms of canal narrowing?
Spinal stenosis may not always cause symptoms. Studies have revealed that there are many people who have no symptoms but have severe spinal stenosis. specified, if any; pain, numbness and cramping in the back or legs. Weakness in the legs may also occur. Rarely, it can cause bladder and/or bowel problems. Complaints may increase with prolonged standing and walking. Symptoms can be continuous or come and go in the form of seizures. After walking for a limited time, it may be necessary to stop and squat due to weakness and numbness in the legs. The walking distance may gradually decrease.
What are the treatment options for canal narrowing?
Symptoms of spinal stenosis often cause patients to avoid movement. This situation creates a decrease in bending and durability. Physical therapy or an exercise program is important for strengthening the muscles and restoring bending ability. Aerobics, cycling, walking are recommended. Because such actions increase the amount of blood coming to the nerves and thus reduce the symptoms of constriction. In addition, exercises that strengthen the back, abdominal and leg muscles may also be recommended. If necessary, a walking aid can be used to make walking the easiest and safest. Spinal stenosis is not a dangerous condition in adults unless significant and progressive leg weakness develops and bladder or bowel problems are present. In such cases, the aim of treatment is to maintain the patient's quality of life and to control the pain if there is pain. When the necessary indications are provided, surgical methods that the doctor deems appropriate can also be used. The aim of the surgical intervention is to remove the pressure and expand the canal diameter. This procedure is called lumbar decompression. Laminectomy is another surgical method that can be chosen. In this method, the back bones are removed and the narrowed bone canal is widened. With the surgical intervention performed with the correct indication, leg pain and loss of function of the leg improve. Today, patients can return to their normal lives a few weeks after the operation.