Category: Spine | Author: Stefano Sinicropi | Date: May 13, 2019
Your back is home to nerves that traverse throughout your body, and as we’ve talked about in other blogs, an issue in your spine can actually lead to the onset of symptoms in other areas of your body. Oftentimes we feel this discomfort in our arms and legs, and it develops in the form of numbness, pain or a tingling sensation. Below, we explain why these symptoms may be developing and how to best treat these nagging symptoms.
Spinal Discomfort Treatments
If you’re dealing with any of the above symptoms, know that it is not normal or something that you should just learn to live with as you get older. Although spine pain is common, you shouldn’t expect to deal with it on a daily basis, especially when treatment is often easier than you may think. But how can you best treat spinal numbness, tingling or radiating pain?
The first thing you’ll want to do is to get a diagnosis from a spine specialist like Dr. Sinicropi. There are a number of different issues that could be causing your discomfort, so you’ll want to pinpoint the exact cause before diving into a treatment regimen. During your visit, Dr. Sinicropi will talk to you about your symptoms and review your medical history. He’ll also ask about when and how the issue first developed before conducting a physical exam. He’ll perform some manipulation exercises to see if certain movements help provide relief or if certain actions cause an uptick in symptoms. After the physical assessment, you’ll likely undergo an X-ray, MRI, CT scan or ultrasound to confirm the diagnosis.
Treating numbness or a tingling sensation really comes down to the root cause, however, many individuals find success with conservative care. Although your specific treatment plan will be based on your individual diagnosis, some common treatment options include:
- Physical Therapy, Exercise and Stretching – A combination of these techniques can often help to free a compressed nerve that is relaying painful or uncomfortable nerve signals. This is the most common set of treatment options for compressed nerve issues.
- Rest – Sometimes a damaged nerve just needs time to heal, and rest can help to provide that. However, rest should also be combined with strength training or exercise for best results.
- Medications – If the nerve compression is being caused by localized inflammation, certain medications and anti-inflammatories can help to resolve pain.
- Spinal implant – If a nerve has been permanently damaged to the point that it is relaying incorrect or frequent pain signals to the brain, an electrical spinal implant can disrupt the flow of these signals. The device can be inserted using minimally invasive surgical techniques.
- Surgery – Finally, if the nerve compression is caused by an issue like a collapsed disc that is not responding to conservative care, a minimally invasive operation can help to restore space in the area and decompress the nerve. A surgeon can also remove part of the offending nerve if it has been damaged beyond repair.
So if you’re dealing with numbness, radiating pain or a tingling sensation in your spine or in your extremities, reach out to Dr. Sinicropi to get a diagnosis and learn about how to best care for your nerve issue.