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Lumbar Spinal Stenosis

The spinal cord extends from the skull to your lower back and travels through the middle part of each stacked vertebra, called the central canal. Nerves branch out from the spinal cord through openings in the vertebrae and carry messages between the brain and muscles. With age, the spinal canal can narrow, resulting in spinal stenosis. The narrowing of the open spaces within your spine can put pressure on your spinal cord and the nerves that travel through the spine to your arms and legs. While herniated disc is common among ages 20~40, spinal stenosis is more common among people over 50.
Starting in your late teens, your discs begin to degenerate, weaken and lose water content. This causes the loss of disc space and height, which results in more pressure on your joints and nerves.
Frequent back pain, and greater pain when bending your back backward rather than forward
Tingling, numbness or burning sensation in buttocks or legs
Your symptoms may vary day to day
Tests and Diagnosis
X-Rays will show aging changes like loss of disc height or bone spurs. CT-scan can create cross-section images of your spine and allow a detailed view of the condition of your spine. MRI will show detailed images of soft tissues and show how the nerves are being pressured.

The doctor typically prescribes medication and exercise therapy.

Epidural decompression may also be performed, which takes about 20 minutes and does not require an overnight hospital stay


Surgery may be considered if conservative treatments haven’t helped or if your condition is severe and disabling. The goal is to relieve the pressure on your spinal cord or nerve roots by creating more space within the canals.

Minimally invasive microscopic decompression surgery may be performed, requiring a 2~3 day hospital stay.