Spinal canal stenosis is the irregular narrowing of the open spaces in the spinal canal. The Mayo Clinic states the symptoms of spinal canal stenosis frequently start slowly and steadily increase over time.
The causes of spinal canal stenosis vary. According to WedMD, the causes include aging, heredity, tumors of the spine and trauma to the spine. People who have spinal canal stenosis often experience recurrent falls, pain when they walk and numbness in the legs. Spinal canal stenosis can be hard to diagnose as the symptoms are very similar to other age-related medical problems.The Mayo Clinic explains that imaging tests such as an MRI or a CT scan may be required to rule out other medical problems and identify the correct condition.
Treatment for spinal canal stenosis depends on the severity and the site of the symptoms. In some cases, physical therapy may be used to build strength, assist with balance and help with proper posture. Medications are another form of treatment for spinal canal stenosis. The Mayo Clinic states the medications that are used in treatment include NSAIDs, muscle relaxants and antidepressants. If no other treatments have helped to relieve the pain, surgery may be performed to relieve the pressure on the nerves.