What is Lumbar Spinal Stenosis?
As we age, our bodies change. Lumbar spinal stenosis occurs when age-related changes to the bones, discs, muscles, and ligaments in the spine put pressure on the spinal canal causing it to narrow and obstruct and crowd nerves in the lumbar spine. This will cause chronic back pain and pressure. (The word stenosis is derived from the Greek word meaning “choking.”) The lumbar spine is the lowest part of the spinal cord and is surrounded by the hips, buttocks and lower back. Lumbar spinal stenosis usually develops later in life and affects people who are over the age of 50.
Symptoms of Lumbar Spinal Stenosis
As the nerves in the lower spine are compressed, they typically cause:
- Leg pain while standing.
- Extreme leg pain while walking that goes away immediately after sitting down.
- A tingling and/or numb sensation from the lower back through the buttocks and legs.
The symptoms of lumbar spinal stenosis come and go. If you are diagnosed with this condition, you may experience periods of extreme pain and discomfort and then other periods during which you are pain-free.