Back and neck pain result from a wide range of spinal conditions. Fortunately, most heal naturally, although you may need to alter activities and modify aspects of your life in the weeks and months that follow. When it’s successful for you, natural healing is the best course of action.
However, not every problem affecting the spine will heal. Many forms of arthritis are degenerative and without a cure, including osteoarthritis, the most common form. Herniated discs don’t always heal. Osteoporosis can cause vertebrae to collapse and may leave you vulnerable to future injury.
In certain situations, spine surgery is the best treatment option. Choosing a practice like Atlas Neurosurgery and Spine Center in Scottsdale, Arizona, provides you with access to state-of-the-art spinal surgery techniques, including minimally invasive options that limit pain while speeding your recovery. Consult with us to find out if spine surgery is the answer for you.
Is spine surgery inevitable?
Most back pain doesn’t require surgery to resolve, and choosing Atlas Neurosurgery and Spine Center doesn’t mean you’re submitting to surgery. With Dr. Abhi Sharma and Erik Curtis, you’re in the care of experienced spine experts who can, when required, perform your surgery.
Except in the case of a traumatic spinal injury, surgery isn’t the first treatment option you’ll experience. Chances are you’ll have more than one conservative alternative to surgery, and you’ll likely find the relief you seek from one of these.
5 reasons why spine surgery is your best treatment option?
Unlike some other health conditions, the reasons you might need spine surgery don’t generally develop quickly, so you won’t be forced to rush a decision. There are, though, situations where this isn’t the case.
1. Spinal cord injury
Damage caused by a traumatic injury, including fractured vertebrae or damage to the spinal cord, could require immediate intervention to prevent permanent damage or disability. When delaying treatment may mean paralysis or other loss of function, there’s no time for a wait-and-see approach.
2. Cauda Equina Syndrome
One of the causes of cauda equina syndrome is a herniated disk, which can also cause problems like sciatica. While disc herniation may be treated with conservative measures, a common symptom of cauda equina syndrome is urinary retention followed by losing control over urinary, bowel, and other functions. Saddle anesthesia (numbness in the genitals, anus, and buttocks as well as pain in the back or legs are all potential symptoms of when the nerve roots connected to the cauda equina (horse’s tail) become compressed. Cauda equina is a medical emergency. Immediate treatment gives you a better chance for a full recovery. Other neurological problems like foot drop may require similar urgent care. Foot drop is a term for difficulty lifting the front part of your foot, where the front of your foot may drag on the ground when walking. If you have recently been dealing with symptoms of foot drop, a consultation with one our neurosurgeons is recommended before this issue becomes permanent.
3. Severe, constant pain
Back pain is often intermittent, accompanying certain movements with sharp, electric-shock pain. When you’re in constant and severe pain that doesn’t modulate naturally, spine surgery may be considered sooner.
4. Sciatica leg pain
When compression affects the sciatic nerve, you may have symptoms in your legs as well as your lower back. Spine surgery to relieve this compression is very effective at relieving these leg symptoms.
5. Spinal stenosis
A blanket term describing the reduction of space through which nerves pass, stenosis can result from bone spurs, herniated discs, vertebral compression fractures, and more. Spine surgery may be your best alternative to restore the space and relieve the compression.
Given the complexity of the spine, every case has unique elements. Your solution starts with an exam and symptom review with Atlas Neurosurgery and Spine Center. You can reach our office by phone and online, so book your appointment today.