What Causes Spinal Ligaments to Thicken?

What Causes Spinal Ligaments to Thicken?

The ligaments of your spine make it possible for you to do many everyday movements. They also keep your spinal column stable and properly aligned.

At The Institute for Comprehensive Spine Care, orthopedic surgeon Gbolahan Okubadejo, MD, FAAOS, specializes in a variety of minimally invasive spine surgeries, including laser spine surgery, to address thick or damaged ligaments that cause you pain.

Why your spinal ligaments might thicken

When you’re young, the ligaments of your spine are typically flexible and strong. As you get older, you can develop hypertrophy, a condition that describes ligament thickening. Hypertrophy can also progress into a hardening of the ligaments, a condition known as ossification.

Both hypertrophy and ossification can increase your risk for chronic back pain and neck pain because the thicker, stiffer tissues can compress surrounding nerves. The tissues can also press on your spinal cord and lead to persistent pain and other symptoms that affect your quality of life.

Additionally, the thickening of your spinal ligaments can result in spinal stenosis, a narrowing of your spinal column. This, too, can put pressure on nearby nerves and cause symptoms like:

When these symptoms become too much to manage on your own, you should schedule an evaluation with Dr. Bo. We offer on-site imaging tests and other diagnostic services to identify spinal stenosis and other complications of thickened ligaments in your spine.

Treatment solutions for thickened spinal ligaments

Your initial treatment plan for discomfort and other symptoms thickened spinal ligaments can cause may include medications to reduce inflammation. You may also benefit from physical therapy and at-home exercises that strengthen the soft tissues that support your spine.

If you have advanced spinal stenosis and it affects your mobility, you may be a candidate for laser spine surgery.  Dr. Bo uses advanced laser technology to shrink or remove targeted specific ligaments in your spine that are pressing on surrounding nerves or your spinal cord.

Laser spine surgery offers many benefits over traditional spine surgery and is highly effective at providing long-term relief of spinal stenosis pain. In many cases, we can perform the surgery on an outpatient basis using only a local anesthesia to keep you comfortable.

Other benefits of laser spine surgery

In addition to treating your spine with a high level of precision, laser spine surgery offers other benefits. This type of advanced surgery offers less risk for surgical and postsurgical complications.

With laser spine surgery, you can expect:

You can also recover much faster than you might after a traditional surgery that requires long or deep incisions.

Our team provides comprehensive after-care services following your surgery to ensure you heal fully, so you can get back to a physically active and full life.

To schedule a diagnostic evaluation for spinal stenosis or to find out if you qualify for laser spine surgery, call The Institute for Comprehensive Spine Care office nearest to you today or book an appointment online. 

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