How do you treat arachnoiditis?


Quick Answer

There is no cure for arachnoiditis, so treatment normally involves pain management measures, such as physical therapy, pain medications, spinal cord stimulation and transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, according to Spine Universe. Surgery is not an effective option as it only causes more trauma and scarring in the spinal area.

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Full Answer

Medications for relieving arachnoiditis symptoms may include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, anti-convulsants to relieve burning pain originating at the spinal cord, narcotic medications, anti-spasm medications, and oral or injected corticosteroids, states Spine Universe. To administer the medications directly into the spinal cord, health care professionals may use an intrathecal pump inserted under the skin. Some physical therapy options that may be helpful include massage therapy, hydrotherapy, and hot or cold application.

A spinal cord stimulator may provide arachnoiditis relief by transmitting an electrical signal to the spine, and transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation involves sending a painless current of electricity to selected nerves, confirms Spine Universe. The patches placed on the skin produce heat that improves mobility, decreases stiffness and relieves pain. Due to the debilitating nature of the condition, patients may wish to join support groups. Some patients may also benefit from psychotherapy and exercise, adds WebMD. Steroid injections may provide pain relief, but more clinical trials are needed as of 2015 to determine their effectiveness.

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