An abnormal narrowing of the open spaces in the spine, spinal stenosis can put considerable pressure on the spinal cord and the nerves that travel through it to the arms and legs. In spinal stenosis, the nerve roots in the lower back become compressed. Although the narrowing may occur at different parts of the spine, the symptoms of nerve compression are frequently similar.
Some people who have spinal stenosis may feel no symptoms, while others may experience pain, tingling, numbness, muscle weakness, and problems with bladder or bowel function.
Though some people are born with a congenital form, spinal stenosis is most commonly caused by wear-and-tear changes in the spine.
In severe cases, a doctor may perform surgery in order to create additional space for the spinal cord or nerves.