Cervical Stenosis

Overview

This problem affects the spinal nerves in your neck. It’s a narrowing of the spinal canal. That’s the space your spinal nerves travel through. In a healthy spine, the spinal canal protects these nerves. It keeps them free from injury. But with spinal stenosis, the spinal canal is too narrow, and your nerves get compressed.

Causes

Spinal stenosis can happen because of disease or injury. Your spinal canal can be narrowed by bone spurs, a bulging disc, or thickened ligaments. You may have a vertebral fracture. You may have a tumor or some other problem. Any of these can cause pressure on your spinal nerves.

Symptoms

Your symptoms depend on which nerves are involved, and how badly they’re compressed. You can have pain. You can have numbness or weakness. You can have problems with balance and coordination. And, you can have problems with your bladder or bowels.

Treatment

Treatment options depend on your needs. Medications may help you. So can physical therapy. You may need to have surgery to make more space for your nerves. Your healthcare provider will create a plan that’s right for you.