Spinal stenosis is not a condition that develops over night, it is almost always preceded by more common conditions such as spinal bone spurs, a herniated disc, disc bulges, disc tears, or scarring from previous injuries or treatments. Over time, if these other conditions are left un-treated and allowed to progress, symptoms of spinal stenosis will begin to be felt. For this reason, it is very important to be pro-active in dealing with your pain.
Note From Dr. Liu
Treatment for spinal stenosis in the early stages will be less complicated than if it progresses further.
In figure 1a. you see what a normal healthy spine should look like. There is no evidence of spinal canal narrowing; therefore there is no pressure being placed on the spinal cord / nerves. In figure 1b. you can see that there is evidence of spinal canal narrowing that is found in cases of spinal stenosis. The narrowing is constricting the spinal cord and surrounding nerves causing pain and other symptoms.
If you think you are suffering from spinal stenosis you should know that there are different stages of stenosis and that the treatment you need will be different depending on what stage your stenosis is in.