By: Samantha Crisafulli, PT, DPT, Cert. DN
How often have you had an x-ray or MRI, and your doctor has diagnosed you with spinal stenosis? Probably very often, since more than 3 million people a year suffer from it. Now, your next question is most likely, what can I do for it? Well, there are several things you can do for it, including surgery, or non-operative treatment options, which consist of epidural injections, NSAIDs, exercise/weight reduction and physical therapy. If you are not into injections or you have tried NSAIDs and dieting before, physical therapy is a perfectly good way to get rid of your aches and pains that are associated with spinal stenosis.
Spinal stenosis is defined as a narrowing of the spaces within your spine, which can put pressure on the nerves that travel through the spine. Spinal stenosis occurs most often in the low back and the neck, which can then cause pain, cramping or numbness/tingling sensations in your legs and arms, respectively. Not all people who suffer from spinal stenosis have symptoms but ones who do, often complain about pain progressively worsening over time.
With a referral from your doctor, a Physical Therapist will perform a mechanical and musculoskeletal examination of your neck or back, depending on where your pain originates, to determine the extent of the condition and potential for rehabilitation. Physical therapy will consist of soft tissue mobilization, passive stretching/range of motion and therapeutic exercises, which will improve your neck/back mobility and strength, all while decreasing your pain.
Majority of people notice an improvement in symptoms immediately due to strengthening the muscles around the spine, taking pressure off the bones and other structures in the back. Also, an increase in flexibility will take pressure off the spine. Exercise in general increases blood flow and brings nutrients into the affected area. Lastly, as neck/back mobility and pain improve, your therapist will provide you with a home exercise program to continue the exercises at home and prevent the risk of developing these symptoms again.
At Professional Rehabilitation Services, we treat a wide variety of musculoskeletal and neurological conditions using the latest in evidence-based therapies provided by highly credentialed physical therapists. Professional Rehabilitation Services has nine convenient locations in Pawleys Island, Murrells Inlet, Surfside Beach, Market Common, Myrtle Beach, Carolina Forest, Conway, Little River and Longs.
For further information on this or other related topics you can contact Richard DeFalco, DPT, OCS, CSCS, CWcHP at Professional Rehabilitation Services (Myrtle Beach) (843) 839-1300, Brian P. Kinmartin PT, DPT, MTC, STC, OCS, CWcHP (Pawleys Island) (843) 235-0200, Richard A. Owens, MPT, OCS, Cert. SMT, CWcHP (Surfside) (843) 831-0163, Jill P. Phelan, PT, DPT, Cert. DN (Conway) (843) 773-3031, Lisa O'Brien, PT, DPT, Cert. DN (Murrells Inlet) (843) 314-3224, Karl Ehlers, PT, DPT, Cert. DN (Little River) (843) 281-4222, Samantha Crisafulli PT, DPT, Cert DN.(Carolina Forest) (843) 282-0440, Zach Daniels PT, DPT, Cert DN (Market Commons) (843) 213-6338 and Brandon Stanley PT, DPT, Cert DN.(Longs) (843) 491-0388 or visit our website at www.prsrehabservices.com where you can learn more about the company and even download a referral form for your physician to fill out. You can also call and schedule a free 15-minute consultation.