Bone Spurs in the Spine
In the medical world, bone spurs are also known as osteophytes. A bone spur is a bony growth that develops most often where two or more bones meet. As these spurs develop and enlarge they can intrude on tissues and other surrounding structures. This can lead to mild, moderate, or intense pain in the impacted areas. Bone spurs can develop on any bone in the body. The unique nature of the spine makes this a particularly bad place for the development of spurs as the spinal canal houses the spinal cord and the nerves. As the spurs grow they can begin to cause impingement (compression) of the spinal cord or nerves leading to pain, weakness, and functional difficulties.
Spinal Bone Spur Treatment Options
Bone spurs are a common and natural occurrence in the body. As a result, treating bone spurs is sometimes not necessary. Spurs can be so minor that you don't even notice. But under certain circumstances bone spurs can lead to pinched spinal nerves, which are often extremely painful. If bone spurs are causing debilitating pain, it's time to think about treatment options.
Treatment can be surgical or non-surgical. Non-surgical treatments can include physical therapy; injections to reduce the pain; pain medications such as muscle relaxers. These non-surgical options may relieve pain initially, but it will most likely return just as bad as before treatment. Surgical treatments may include:
- Minimally Invasive Laminotomy (Lumbar and Cervical)
- Minimally Invasive Foraminotomy (Lumbar and Cervical)
- Traditional Laminotomy (Lumbar and Cervical)
- Traditional Foraminotomy (Lumbar and Cervical)
Bone Spur Spine Surgery in St. Paul
The majority of bone spur patients can be treated with minimally invasive spine surgery. The procedure is relatively quick and can be performed on an outpatient basis. Sometimes the compression is so severe or in a location that requires more traditional decompressions. Many of these can also be done as an outpatient. If you are suffering from symptoms related to bone spurs, which have not improved with non-surgical care, then contact Midwest Spine & Brain Institute at 1.800.353.7720 to schedule an evaluation of your neck and/or back pain with one of our St. Paul spine surgeons.