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Spinal Cord Disorders Message Board

Spinal Cord Disorders Board Index

Re: Spinal Stenosis
Feb 18, 2004
[QUOTE=SalukiDawg]Hi Pam,

I have just been recently been diagnosed with cervical spinal stenosis as well. My most recent MRI shows compression as the result of osteoarthritis at my C3-C4, C4-C5, and severe arthritis in my C5-C6 vertebrae, along with a herniated disk. Like you, I probably had symptoms for years, however, it took a pinched nerve causing extreme pain and numbness in my right arm to force me to take action.

I was initially given Prednisone to control the inflammation. Steroids do work in controlling the pain, however, it is not a good idea to be on steroids long term. My neurologist took me off of steroids and put me on Vioxx for the inflammation and Percocet for pain control.

With a month of bedrest and reduced activity, my pain has decreased to the point where I do not have to take Percocet on a regular basis, and I have returned to work for the time being. My right arm has regained some strength, but it is still generally weak. If I exert myself too much, sometimes the pain gets worse. Unfortunately, I am also developing symptoms of myelopathy, with accentuated leg reflexes, a Babinski reflex in my right big toe, and sometimes when I am walking, I can feel something akin to an electric shock travelling from my heels, through my spine, to my arms.

Depending on the severity of your stenosis, PT and some form of pain management may just be enough for you to return to normal. I wish that was the case for me. I have been told by my neurologist that although PT may help with relief of symptoms, it is not a cure, and surgery is the only real option in my circumstance. I have a second appointment with a spine surgeon on January 21. I should have had surgery by now, however, my first set of MRI's weren't of good enough quality for the surgeon to plan his surgery, so I got a second set of MRI's.

Good luck, and keep us posted on your progress! It is good to hear from others who are experiencing the same condition and how they are coping with this.


Just read SalukiDawg's reply and it sounds way too similar to me. I canceled a first scheduled surgery for posterior decompression and fusion C3to C6. Same myelopathy symptoms. Now I have obtained 4 opinions from well known and respected NS and Ortho spine surgeons. All say surgery is needed to decompress the spine. One says anterior, with fusion, two say posterior decomp with fusion, a third says laminectomay only, to maintain mobility as long as possible. I have been exploring the Jho Institute for minimally invasive surgery and an org in Florida called Mocrospine. I am hoping these Docs can do minimally invsive options first. Once that lamina is gone, its gone for good. Problem is time is running. I have had no left arm bicep for 5 months. If you or anyone have any insight, I am interested. Any knowledge of Dr. Jho?


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