Many cases of spinal cord compression do require surgery, but in mild cases, your doctor may recommend non-surgical therapies to decrease pain and improve your quality of life, such as medication and physical therapy.
How serious is spinal cord compression?
Without treatment, spinal cord compression can cause damage to the spinal nerves, which can result in loss of bladder or bowel control or paralysis. If you experience sudden inability to control your bladder or bowels, or if you have severe weakness or numbness, you should seek medical care immediately.
Can spinal cord compression heal itself?
Spinal cord damage can heal by itself but there is no way to determine the degree of healing. We do know that the longer the compression the higher the risk of permanent damage.
Can spinal cord compression be treated without surgery?
Cervical spine problems can often be treated without surgery. Choices may include rest, medicines, or injections. Your healthcare provider may also suggest physical therapy or certain exercises. These treatments may all help to relieve your symptoms and are often successful.
Why is spinal cord compression an emergency?
Spinal cord compression constitutes a true emergency because the initial injury to the spinal cord will lead to permanent loss of neurologic function if the pressure of the tumor on the cord is not relieved quickly.
How long does it take for spinal cord compression to heal?
Your doctor may not be able to give you a prognosis right away. Recovery, if it occurs, typically starts a week to six months after an injury. The fastest rate of recovery is often seen in the first six months, but some people experience small improvements for up to one to two years.
Will I end up in a wheelchair with spinal stenosis?
The symptoms are often so gradual, that patients seek medical attention very late in the course of this condition. Patients may be so disabled and weak that they require the use of a wheelchair for mobility. In rare instances, severe spinal stenosis can cause paraplegia and/or bowel/bladder incontinence.
Is spinal cord compression a disability?
Anyone with a spinal cord injury can file a claim for Social Security disability benefits as long as the injury has lasted at least three months and is expected to make it impossible for you to work for at least 12 months.
What are the symptoms of spinal cord problem?
Symptoms of a Spinal Cord Disorder
- Weakness or paralysis of limbs.
- Loss of sensation.
- Changes in reflexes.
- Loss of urinary or bowel control.
- Uncontrolled muscle spasms.
- Back pain.
What is the fastest way to heal a herniated disc?
Treatment with rest, pain medication, spinal injections, and physical therapy is the first step to recovery. Most people improve in 6 weeks and return to normal activity. If symptoms continue, surgery may be recommended.
Does spinal cord compression affect the brain?
For some, it leads to compression of the spinal cord which can cause problems with dexterity, numbness in the hands, and the ability to walk. New research looks beyond the spinal cord injury in these patients, and found they also experience changes in the motor cortex of the brain.
When Is Spinal cord compression an emergency?
Spinal cord compression or cauda equina syndrome (compression of nerve bundle in lower spine) is a medical emergency. Call your healthcare provider or go to the emergency room if you have: Sudden loss of bowel or bladder control. Severe or increasing numbness between your legs, inner thighs, or back of your legs.