According to Preaveen Kadimcherla, MD, and orthopedic spine surgeon at Atlantic Spine Center, many back pain patients suffer from foraminal stenosis. Foraminal stenosis occurs when the spinal nerve roots that run through openings in the spinal column called foramina become compressed. This narrowing of the foramina causes pain, tingling, numbness and/or weakness in the arms or legs.
Foraminal stenosis can be caused by these problems:
- Bulging or herniated discs
- Bone spurs
- Degenerative disc disease
Foraminal stenosis can usually be treated with conservative methods if it is diagnosed early. Non-surgical conservative treatments include non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications, activity modifications, epidural cortisone injections and physical therapy exercises.
When these conservative methods fail to relieve the pain, Dr. Kadimcherla considers performing a minimally invasive procedure called an endoscopic foraminotomy. This procedure involves removing debris that causes the foraminal stenosis through a tiny incision in the patient’s back.
Dr. Kadimcherla says, “Most patients can quickly go home and get back to their old life. We do whatever it takes to allow people to be free of back pain.”