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A 39-year-old member asked:

What causes spinal stenosis?

8 doctor answers14 doctors weighed in
Dr. Katharine Garnier
Family Medicine 34 years experience
Several things: Spinal stenosis can be congenital but is also acquired with aging, or trauma, by either arthritis, herniated discs or even vertebral collapse as people age, which can result in vertebra slipping across each other which can cause stenosis too. It is important to see a neurosurgeon for evaluation, or a orthopedist who specializes in the spine, for full evaluation and treatment, surgery is an option.
Dr. Nalinaksha Joshi
Neurology 24 years experience
Many: Some are born with. Some get herniated disk, spondylosis, tumor etc.
Dr. Thomas Dowling
Orthopedic Spine Surgery 41 years experience
Several causes: People are born with either a small, medium or large spinal canal. Spinal stenosis is when the canal is too narrow fornerve tissue resultting in its compression. Everyone's canal narrows with time due to degeneration. By age 60, 20% have imaging finding of stenosis but not necessarily symptoms. Other causes are: congenital v acquired due to - fracture, herniation, tumor, fat, instability.
Dr. Edward Hellman
Orthopedic Surgery 30 years experience
Degeneration: It is typically a degenerative, arthritic process in the spine.
Dr. Michael Bolesta
Orthopedic Surgery 41 years experience
You can't: The size of the canal is inherited. The secondary degenerative leading to further narrowing is also linked to genetics. You may be able to reduce this by healthy living (regular exercise, no tobacco use, etc), but overall you have little influence on this condition.
Dr. Thomas Dowling
Orthopedic Spine Surgery 41 years experience
Born with or develop: Spinal stenosis is a narrowing of the spinal canal leading to compression of nerve tissue. You can be born with it or you can develop it with age related or degenerative changes or acquire it through deformities/instabilities or with disc herniations, synovial cysts or after some spine fractures.
Dr. Dean Giannone
Internal Medicine 26 years experience
Spinal stenosis.: Spinal stenosis in a condition wherein tissue grows around the spinal cord, causing gradual compression and pain. It's progressive and unrelenting. Unfortunately leading to debility and pain. Surgical options are available which may help, but left alone it'll cause progressive limitations. The rate of progression is unpredictable.
Dr. Edward Hellman
Orthopedic Surgery 30 years experience
Degeneration: The most common type is caused by a gradual, progressive arthritic process in the spine.

Similar questions

South Jordan, UT
A 24-year-old female asked:

Can a herniated disc cause spinal stenosis?

2 doctor answers2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Clint Wilson
Family Medicine 16 years experience
Spinal issues: stenosis is simply another word for "narrowing" of the space. So it's possible that a herniation (something going into a space it's not supposed to) is causing the narrowing. However herniation is not always the permanent disk problem people always think and this may be a different disc level. I'm not aware of the imaging obviously. Make sure to follow up with your physician to go over the imaging
A 23-year-old member asked:

Can spinal stenosis cause permanent damage?

4 doctor answers6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Paul Driscoll
Family Medicine 42 years experience
Yes: Spinal stenosis is a condition where arthritic changes in the spine cause narrowing of the spinal canal and outflow tracts of the spinal nerves. With time, continuing pressure on the nerves or spinal cord can cause pemanent damage. However, many cases of spinal stenosis can be successfully treated with medications, injections, or surgery.
A 46-year-old member asked:

Could spinal stenosis cause sexual dysfunction?

3 doctor answers6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Edward Neilsen
Family Medicine 20 years experience
Possibly: If severe enough to cause compression of the lumbar nerve roots (specifically l2, 3, 4) this could cause difficulty with normal arousal reflexes, including erection.
A male asked:

Can spinal stenosis cause sexual dysfuction?

3 doctor answers7 doctors weighed in
Dr. Ravi Chauhan
Urology 23 years experience
Yes: Any compromise of the spinal cord can affect the nerves responsible for erections.
A member asked:

What is spinal stenosis

10 doctor answers12 doctors weighed in
Dr. Myles Greenberg
Emergency Medicine 29 years experience
Spinal narrowing: Spinal stenosis is a narrowing of the spinal canal (which contains the spinal cord and nerves) caused by enlargement of the surrounding ligaments and bones. This enlargement creates pressure on the nerves and/or spinal cord and their blood supply resulting usually in back and/or leg pain, especially when the patient is walking upright. The condition usually occurs in older people.
Dr. Myles Greenberg
Emergency Medicine 29 years experience
Provided original answer
For a new, less invasive procedure (the MILD procedure) for certain patients with spinal stenosis check out this website: http://www.mildprocedure.com
Feb 3, 2012
Dr. Bikash Bose
Dr. Bikash Bose commented
Neurosurgery 46 years experience
Disc encroaching into the spinal canal can also cause spinal stenosis in addition to ligament and bony overgrowth.
May 28, 2014

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Last updated Sep 14, 2020
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