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Vitamin D Deficiency and Spinal Stenosis – Cause or Effect?

vitamin d back pain cycling exercise

Cycling is often a great way for low back pain sufferers to stay active and soak up some sun!

Make hay while the sun shines, or so the saying goes. Spinal stenosis sufferers might want to consider the alternative phrasing of ‘make vitamin D while the sun shines’ as research suggests that a deficiency of vitamin D is linked to increased pain and worse prognosis for spinal stenosis. Interestingly, however, women who undergo back surgery for lumbar spinal stenosis actually enjoyed increased vitamin D levels after their procedure. What’s the link between vitamin D and back pain? Let’s take a look. Continue reading “Vitamin D Deficiency and Spinal Stenosis – Cause or Effect?” »

Having Second Thoughts About Spinal Stenosis Surgery?

Spinal Stenosis SurgeryMaking the decision to undergo spinal stenosis surgery is a serious one that should not be taken lightly. On the one hand, you have likely been struggling with spinal stenosis symptoms for months or years and you are ready to put an end to your discomfort. On the other hand, there are inherent risks with any surgery and you may wonder if you’re truly ready for this next step in the treatment process. Having anxiety or misgivings about spine surgery is perfectly natural and if you truly feel you aren’t ready, trust your gut instinct– if your condition is not life threatening, there is usually no harm in putting off the procedure and trying conservative treatments for a while longer. Continue reading “Having Second Thoughts About Spinal Stenosis Surgery?” »

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Tethered Spinal Cord Causes and Treatments

tethered spinal cord in infant spinal stenosis low back painTethered spinal cord syndrome is a condition closely linked to spina bifida but which can also occur as a result of injury to the spinal cord in childhood or adult life. This neurological disorder is caused by abnormal tissue attachments in the spine that restrict movement of the spinal cord and create problematic tension in the spinal cord. It may be a result of congenital issues or can arise from spinal stenosis or be exacerbated by pregnancy, or as a result of sporting activities. Surgery for a tethered spinal cord may be necessary in some cases, in others a mix of medications and physical therapy may suffice to relieve symptoms. Continue reading “Tethered Spinal Cord Causes and Treatments” »

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Spinal Stenosis Surgery – Can it Help Treat Symptoms Caused by the Narrowing in Your Spine?

Spinal Stenosis SurgeryIf you’ve been diagnosed with spinal stenosis, surgery will probably not be part of your treatment plan right away, if at all. In fact, most patients with spinal stenosis are able to find relief from a regimen of conservative, nonsurgical treatments, such as anti-inflammatory drugs, pain medication, physical therapy, and others.

So, how do you know when it might be time to start exploring your surgical options?

Continue reading “Spinal Stenosis Surgery – Can it Help Treat Symptoms Caused by the Narrowing in Your Spine?” »

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Considering Herniated Disc Surgery? Make Sure You’ve Done This Before Giving Consent.

Herniated Disc SurgeryBefore consenting to herniated disc surgery, almost every patient suffering from the effects of this degenerative condition should create a checklist of items to consider. In most cases, spine surgery for a herniated disc is considered an elective procedure, which means unless there is a life-threatening condition or a spine specialist considers it a matter of urgency, most people can afford to give the decision and supporting research the time they deserve. Continue reading “Considering Herniated Disc Surgery? Make Sure You’ve Done This Before Giving Consent.” »

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Minimally Invasive Spinal Stenosis Treatment – What Are My Options?

Spinal stenosis treatmentSpinal stenosis treatment in the form of an endoscopic procedure may be an option for people who have attempted several months of conservative (nonsurgical) treatments without finding sufficient relief from their symptoms. Minimally invasive procedures performed through an endoscope offer a variety of benefits over highly invasive open spine surgeries, including the fact that they can be performed on an outpatient basis (no hospitalization). Endoscopic spine surgeries also involve fewer risks and require a much shorter and less painful recovery period than that of an open spine surgery. Continue reading “Minimally Invasive Spinal Stenosis Treatment – What Are My Options?” »

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What to do Before and Immediately After You Consent to Slipped Disc Surgery

Slipped disc surgerySlipped disc surgery should never be agreed to without researching the potential side effects and risks. Surgery is almost always the last resort for someone suffering from debilitating pain and other symptoms associated with a slipped disc (or, more properly, a herniated disc). Of course, if you have begun to consider surgery to alleviate your symptoms, chances are you already have held several – perhaps many – conversations with your physician or back specialist about your options.

You might also have attempted to treat your symptoms with a wide variety of conservative, nonsurgical treatment methods, only to find that your symptoms remain debilitating and your quality of life continues to deteriorate. At this point, it is certainly reasonable to begin your research into slipped disc surgery.


Continue reading “What to do Before and Immediately After You Consent to Slipped Disc Surgery” »

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Spinal Stenosis Surgery – Understanding Your Options

Spinal Stenosis SurgeryIf you’re one of the relatively few patients for whom elective spinal stenosis surgery becomes an option, it’s important to ask your physician about the surgical procedures that may be available to you. The specific procedure or procedures you ultimately choose to undergo will be highly dependent on your unique situation, but most procedures will focus on treating stenosis, or narrowing, in spinal passageways by enlarging the space within the spinal canal to decompress the spinal cord, or within an intervertebral foramen to decompress a nerve root. Continue reading “Spinal Stenosis Surgery – Understanding Your Options” »

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Managing Chronic Back Pain: Spinal Cord Stimulator Unnecessary with Integrative Approach

spinal cord stimulator versus integrative approach to chronic back pain

Some 89% of patients in this study avoided back surgery with a multimodal approach to pain relief.

Patients with chronic back pain may not need invasive back surgery and implantation of a spinal cord stimulator if an integrative medicine approach is used for their treatment. According to research presented at the recent American Academy of Pain Management (AAPM) 23rd Annual Clinical Meeting late last month, a multimodal approach to back pain management could help patients avoid unnecessary back surgery. Continue reading “Managing Chronic Back Pain: Spinal Cord Stimulator Unnecessary with Integrative Approach” »

New Back Pain Treatment Controversy

lumbar spinal stenosis surgery device controversy

Vertos Medical's Mild procedure is causing controversy in the world of spin research.

The field of spinal medicine might seem pretty boring but a recent clash between a back surgery device manufacturer and a doctor researching one of their products is turning into quite the drama.

Dr Daryl F. Fourney was the lead researcher in a clinical trial looking into a new procedure for back pain from lumbar spinal stenosis but the manufacturer, Vertos Medical, have charged Fourney with scientific misconduct after he revealed that many of the patients experienced severe back pain after the treatment. Fourney is now fighting to expose some of the drawbacks of clinical trial methodology, as well as to save his own reputation as a researcher. Continue reading “New Back Pain Treatment Controversy” »