Spinal stenosis develops over time as age-related changes in your spine end up narrowing your spinal canal, pinching nerves, and causing pain that’s often difficult to treat. Humam Akbik, MD, at Cincinnati Comprehensive Pain Center specializes in safe and effective interventional treatments such as indirect spinal decompression using an innovative implant. If you need help with back, neck, leg, or arm pain, call the office in Fairfield, Ohio, to schedule an appointment or request a return call from staff using the online contact form.

Spinal Stenosis Q & A

When back pain turns into a chronic condition, the pain usually doesn’t respond well to conservative medical care. As a specialist in interventional medicine and pain management, Humam Akbik, MD, at Cincinnati Comprehensive Pain Center has helped many patients overcome their back pain with interventional treatment plans customized to meet their individual needs. To learn more about your treatment options, call the office in Cincinnati or use the online contact form to request a phone call from their staff.

What is spinal stenosis?

Spinal stenosis is a condition in which your spinal canal narrows. Your spinal canal is formed by an opening in the center of the vertebrae. The nerves that form your spinal cord travel through the canal, where they’re protected by the vertebral bones.

Spinal stenosis is caused by conditions such as:

  • Herniated disc (the most common cause)
  • Bone spurs
  • Thickened ligaments
  • Slipped disc

Each of these conditions results in tissues protruding into the spinal canal, like a bulging disc or piece of bone. As a result, space in the canal narrows, the nerves become compressed and irritated, and symptoms develop.

What symptoms develop due to spinal stenosis?

Inflammation and pain develop as your nerves are compressed. You may also experience symptoms that often occur when nerves are damaged or irritated, such as tingling, numbness, and muscle weakness.

Spinal stenosis most often affects the lower back or neck. In addition to feeling pain in those areas, you may also have symptoms anywhere along the affected nerve. Many patients with spinal stenosis have pain that radiates through their arms and legs.

How is spinal stenosis treated?

When you still have pain despite conventional medical treatment like medication and physical therapy, Dr. Akbik offers an effective alternative: interventional medicine. He specializes in innovative therapies that effectively relieve your pain by treating the source of the problem.

The following are two examples of treatments Dr. Akbik recommends for spinal stenosis:

Vertiflex Superion® Indirect Decompression System (Superion)

The Superion is a small titanium device that’s implanted between two vertebrae using minimally invasive surgery. The implant has a central supporting piece with two wing-like attachments.

It’s easily inserted through a very small incision because the wings are down. After it’s in place, Dr. Akbik releases the wings and when they open, they gently and securely separate the bones. As a result, the nerves have more space and they’re no longer compressed.

It usually only takes 30 minutes to insert the Superion. When your procedure is over, your pain is significantly reduced.

Epidural steroid injections

Using real-time X-ray imaging to guide the needle, Dr. Akbik injects a steroid into the epidural space of the spine near the affected nerves. The medication flows around the nerves and reduces inflammation, which relieves your pain.

When you need treatment that works to relieve neck, arm, back, and leg pain, schedule an appointment by calling Cincinnati Comprehensive Pain Center or request a call from an experienced staff member using the online contact form.