Spondylosis is a common condition associated with aging that can cause discomfort, stiffness, and pain in your spine.
At Re Innovative Neuroscience Institute, we can help you find relief. With decades of experience in neurosurgery, neuroscience, and internal medicine, our experts have the knowledge, skill, and expertise to help you feel your best again.
Call the office today at (941) 893-2688 to schedule your consultation.
WHAT IS IT?
Spondylosis refers to age-related wear and tear on the spinal discs. Eventually the discs, which serve as cushions between your vertebrae, dry out and shrink. With reduced cushioning, osteoarthritis may develop and lead to bone spurs, which can cause discomfort, stiffness, and nerve pressure.
Spondylosis is not only common but also worsens with age. More than 85 out of 100 people older than 60 have experienced spondylosis. While it can be asymptomatic, pain and stiffness are common.
In rare cases, spondylosis leads to narrowing of the spinal canal, which can put pressure on the nerves running through your spine.
Pinching of the nerve roots or spinal cord can cause symptoms that include:
Balance and mobility difficulty
Reduced control of your bowel or bladder
Tingling, numb, or weak legs, feet, arms, or hands
While this process usually occurs gradually and symptoms may appear periodically, seek medical attention immediately if there is a sudden onset of symptoms.
WHAT CAUSES IT?
The bones and cartilage of your spine develop wear and tear over the course of your life and activity. These lead to a number of changes which can cause discomfort and may contribute to spondylosis, either alone or in combination.
After 40 years old, most people’s spinal discs begin to dehydrate and shrink. As these cushions get smaller, they are less able to absorb shocks and lead to more direct, bone-to-bone contact between neighboring vertebrae.
Aging also increases the likelihood of cracks in the exterior of your spinal discs, which leads to herniated discs. These damaged discs may bulge and put pressure on the spinal cord or nerve roots.
Degenerated spinal discs trigger additional bone formation as a compensatory mechanism to strengthen the spine. This extra bone growth, called bone spurs, may pinch or put pressure on the spinal cord or nerve roots.
The cords of tissue, called ligaments, which connect the chain of bones comprising your spine, often toughen and stiffen with age. This reduces flexibility and creates the potential for spinal degeneration.
HOW CAN IT BE TREATED?
The Re team diagnoses spondylosis with a physical exam to check range of motion, mobility, reflexes, and muscle strength. Additional diagnostic measures such as imaging provide more structural details and nerve function tests to assess whether the nerve signals are traveling properly.
Depending on the severity of your condition, we may recommend prescription medication, physical therapy, or, in severe cases or cases which fail to respond to other treatments, surgery. The neurosurgeons make additional space within your spinal canal to reduce pressure on your spinal cord and nerve roots.
They may accomplish this by:
Herniated disc repair
Bone spur removal
Partial vertebra removal
Spinal fusion using a bone graft and metal hardware
Whatever the severity of your spondylosis, the experts at Re Innovative Neuroscience Institute will have you feeling your best. Make an appointment today by calling the office at (941) 893-2688.