Living with back pain can be incredibly frustrating and can be a major hindrance to daily activities. Having no idea what caused the problem can make it even more frustrating. The cause of pain could be as simple as improper posture, improper exercise, or even sleeping in the wrong position. The presence of pain, however, can also indicate the presence of a physical problem. Bone spurs in the lower back can cause swelling, muscle weakness, numbness, and loss of motion in the arms and legs.
The lower back is affected by bone spur
In most cases, bone spurs can be found in joints, though they can develop anywhere along the bone edge. Lower back bone spurs pose a particular problem because they usually appear between the vertebrae, which are responsible for protecting the spinal cord, containing the body's most sensitive nerves. This extra growth pinches the nerves that transmit information from the spinal cord to the rest of the body and cramps the already small area surrounding the spinal cord. The result is usually back pain and numbness or weakness in the arms and legs.
What is a Bone Spur?
In order to replace worn or damaged bone parts, the body produces bone spurs or osteophytes. Joints and areas where bones move regularly are the most common places where they occur. Doctors can diagnose bone spurs by asking a few questions and assessing joint flexibility and pain during a physical exam. X-rays, MRIs, CTs, or bone scans will show the extra growth.
Why do they occur?
Friction joints between bones are typically surrounded by cartilage. In addition to preventing damage to bones, this layer prevents them from rubbing against each other. These protective cartilages, however, can be destroyed by conditions like osteoarthritis. The result is the exposure of bone endings and their vulnerability to damage. In order to repair the worn-down bone, new bone can grow, or a bone spur will form.
Especially in people with arthritis, bone spurs are very common. If they do not begin to press on sensitive nerves, they can often go unnoticed. Painful inflammation and swelling will result from this extra pressure on the nerves. In the absence of compression, bone spurs are simply harmless bits of extra bone.
How long do they last?
It is impossible to resorb or disappear a bone spur once it has grown. Cutting off a bone spur is the only way to remove it, but it is usually not recommended unless it compresses an important nerve or spinal cord. Nevertheless, bone spur growth can be reduced. Maintaining physical fitness will help decrease the amount of pressure on vulnerable joints in the lower back and knees, which will hopefully reduce the amount of damage these joints sustain due to arthritis.
How to treat lower back bone spurs
It's possible to alleviate bone spur pain and stress on the body and joints even though bone spurs are permanent. As the back is particularly vulnerable to stress and pressure, this is especially encouraging news for those suffering from back pain. The pain caused by bone spurs in the lower back can be treated in a number of ways, such as by exercising, physical therapy, and using medications.
Back Exercises - Physical Therapy
Joint and muscle relaxation can be achieved through exercise, stretching, and physical therapy. It is possible to relieve pressure between vertebrae by stretching in several specific ways. Exercises like hip twists, which strengthen abdominal muscles, and butt lifts, are examples. A child's pose or prayer stretch allows the spine to curve naturally, allowing the areas between vertebrae where bone spurs are present to expand, allowing restricted nerves to move more freely. The back of the legs is often home to affected nerves, so even stretching your hamstrings can alleviate the pain. Exercise and stretching can shift and relieve pressure on bone spurs, although they don't reduce them.
Over-the-counter pain medications can help relieve the soreness caused by bone spurs, but there are no medicines to cure them. Inflammation caused by bone spurs can be soothed with these medications, which are easily accessible. It is most commonly treated with acetaminophen or naproxen sodium. Some of these solutions may, however, only provide temporary relief and require regular use. Taking them regularly with a doctor's supervision can also result in serious systemic side effects.
Lower back bone spur pain can only be alleviated by surgery as a last resort. A doctor may want to remove these growths altogether. If the growth pain is too severe, if the spur compresses the spinal cord, or if motor weakness is observed, the growths may be removed. It would involve completely cutting off the affected bone areas in the back and lumbar muscles. Surgical procedures are highly invasive, with risks and recovery times associated with them. There is, however, a significant improvement in quality of life and longer relief when bone spurs are removed.
Between worn-down joints, bone spurs can appear as harmless growths. As a result of pressing against the sensitive nerves of the spinal column, bone spurs in the lower back can be particularly painful. Besides the back, nerves in the legs and arms may also be affected as a result of this condition. Movement is often restricted, and everyday activities are hindered by this pain. Surgery for bone spurs usually produces positive results, and most patients experience significant relief after the operation. A spine specialist can help you if you suspect bone spurs are the cause of your back pain.From the Web