What Causes Spinal Instability and What Can I Do About It?

What Causes Spinal Instability and What Can I Do About It?

Your risk for spinal instability and the chronic back pain it can cause increases as you age. If you’re limited by chronic spine pain, you can find help at The Institute for Comprehensive Spine Care.

As an experienced spine surgeon, Gbolahan Okubadejo, MD, FAAOS, offers a wide range of treatments for spinal instability. Dr. Bo not only can help you find long-lasting back pain relief, but he can also help lower your risk for disabling spine complications.

Understanding spinal instability

Spinal instability is a condition that develops when spinal trauma or a degenerative disease like osteoarthritis causes abnormal movements in your spine.

Instability can develop because of damage to any of the structures of the spine and the soft tissues that support it. This includes your:

You can also develop spinal instability if you have damage in the spinal nerves that control movements in your spine or in your central nervous system.

In addition to the direct pain spinal instability can cause, other parts of your body can suffer, too. Your hips and shoulders may overcompensate for your spine’s excessive movements and lead to pain and other complications that affect your physical and mental health.

Risk factors and symptoms of spinal instability

Trauma and arthritis are two common causes of spinal instability. However, your risk for the condition can increase if you have other spinal conditions like:

Any of these issues can contribute to abnormal movements in your spine and symptoms of spinal instability. You may experience persistent back pain and muscle spasms that worsen during physical activity.

Many people also develop sciatica, pain in the lower back caused by inflammation in your sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve is a large nerve that travels from your lower back and down into your hips and legs.

Sciatica pain can feel like electric shocks with your movements, you may also experience numbness, tingling, and weakness in any of the areas along the nerve.

Minimally invasive surgery options for spinal instability

Even if your spinal instability is minor, you may need surgery to repair it. This is especially true if your abnormal spinal movements compress or damage nearby nerves.

Dr. Bo offers minimally invasive spine surgeries to address the underlying cause of spinal instability. He only needs small incisions to access your spine and remove damaged vertebrae or herniated discs. Dr. Bo can replace your natural discs with artificial ones to keep your spine stable and healthy.

If you have severe spinal instability, you may need spinal fusion surgery. Fusion surgery involves joining two or more vertebrae together to limit movements in your spine and alleviate pressure on surrounding soft tissues and nerves.

Because Dr. Bo only needs to make small incisions during surgery, you can expect to heal faster than you might with traditional open surgery. There’s also less risk for infection, bleeding, and pain with advanced minimally invasive techniques.

To find out if you’re a candidate for surgery to treat spinal instability, call The Institute for Comprehensive Spine Care office nearest to you today or book a consultation online.

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