Category: Minimally Invasive Surgery | Author: Stefano Sinicropi | Date: March 28, 2022
Bone spurs can develop in any bony area of your body, but your spine is one of the most common locations for their onset because of its design that the strain we put on our back each day. When a spinal bone spur develops and causes symptoms, many people want to know if the spurs will eventually resolve on their own. In today’s blog, we explain if bone spurs will resolve on their own, and the best way to treat these abnormal bone growths.
Spinal Bone Spur Development
Your spinal vertebrae are separated by thick layers of cartilage that help make the spine flexible and prevent the bones from rubbing against one another. However, over the years through natural degeneration or as a result of spinal osteoarthritis, this protective cartilage can shrink, making it easier for these bones to become damaged with movement. When this happens, tiny pieces of bone can break free and irritate nearby structures. Or, when the body attempts to replace old damaged bone, the new bone can form in a slightly unnatural way, resulting in the formation of a bony prominence or bone spur.
Sometimes these spinal bone spurs can be asymptomatic, while other times they can really irritate nearby tissues and nerves and cause pain. You only really need treatment if they are causing discomfort, but will this treatment lead to the bone spurs going away on their own?
While the symptoms may fade a little, conservative care will not cause the spurs to disappear. Your back and body may become stronger or better able to move without causing the spur to irritate structures, but the spurs will never just go away. The symptoms can sometimes disappear, but the only way to fully remove the spur from your system is with surgery.
Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery
Surgery to remove problematic bone spurs can typically be performed on a minimally invasive basis. This means that the surgeon will create a few small incisions on your spine and use specialized tools that are attached to a camera to visualize the spurs without needing to make a large incision on your spine. The bone spurs are then carefully removed, the incision site is closed and the patient can begin a relatively short recovery period in most instances.
As is the case with a number of spinal conditions, since bone spurs will not go away on their own, the best form of treatment is actually prevention. If you can work to prevent a spur from growing in the first place, you won’t run into any trouble trying to resolve the discomfort a spur can cause. And while they are never completely preventable, some ways to reduce your risk of developing spinal bone spurs include:
- Maintaining an ideal weight
- Exercising regularly (not all high-impact activities)
- Getting a range of vitamins and minerals in your diet
- Wearing protective gear during athletics
- Strive for correct posture throughout the day
Dr. Sinicropi and his team can walk you through some non-operative treatment methods to help lessen or resolve your symptoms if you’re dealing with spinal bone spurs, or he can perform a minimally invasive surgery should you require an operation. Don’t just ignore bone spurs or try to push through the discomfort, because they won’t go away on their own. Let a professional help you get a handle on your painful bone spurs today. For more information, contact Dr. Sinicropi’s office today at (651) 430-3800.