When you have foraminal narrowing, this is a specific kind of spinal stenosis. Foramina is a bony passage that is found in between your vertebrae, that is found in your spine. Your foramina is there to help provide a clear exit path for your nerves that are leaving your spinal cord and then they branch out and travel to all of the other parts of your body.

Treatment options for Foraminal Narrowing

Physical therapy

If you want to be able to stabilize your spine then stretches and certain specific exercises would be able to help you with that. They could help improve your range of motion, and they could also help in opening up the space for your nerve roots. When you lose weight, it would also help in taking some of the pressure off of your spine and your nerve roots.

Surgery

Surgery is a treatment option for foraminal narrowing, but this is only usually done when all of the other non-invasive treatment procedures do not work. Depending on the location and what is causing it, they would remove your bulging bone or enlarge the area so that your nerves could pass through.

Medication

  • Steroids
  • Narcotics
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs

Activity modification

Especially when you have such an active lifestyle, you are going to have to take a rest when you start feeling pain, weakness, and numbness. This is because your symptoms could worsen when you do not stop, but also when you are inactive for too long. You could use cold packs for the first few days, slowly transitioning into warm packs or heating pads.

Orthotic 

You might have to wear a neck brace or a soft cervical collar when you have this pinched nerve that is found on your neck because it would help in limiting your movements and just let the muscles on your neck rest. 

What are the Common Causes of Foraminal Narrowing in Florida?

  • Aging
  • Degenerative spinal changes
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Bone spurs
  • Herniated disc
  • Degenerative disc changes
  • Enlarged ligaments around your spine
  • Cyst
  • Tumore
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • Bone diseases
  • Dwarfism
  • Other genetic conditions

How is Foraminal Narrowing Diagnosed?

CT scans

If an x-ray is not enough, you could get a CT scan because it would be able to show so much more detail than an x-ray. So a CT scan would be able to allow your doctor to see more of your bone spurs that are located near your foramen.

X-rays

When your surgeon uses an x-ray, they would be able to see the alignment of your bones clearly. With an x-ray, they would be able to see the bones of your spine and the narrowing of your foramen.

Bone scans

Bone scans are scans that would be able to help detect fractures, tumors, infections, and arthritis. So they are also able to identify foraminal narrowing.

Electromyography and Nerve Conduction Studies

Both of these are done at the same time because with both of these, your doctor would be able to see if your nerves are working properly. When you take these tests, then you would be able to help your doctors see and know what your symptoms are being caused by. If this is because your pressure is being pressed on your spinal nerve roots, or if you have any other condition.

MRI scans

Using MRI scans would be able to detect any damage that is done to your soft tissues. Some of these soft tissues that they could detect damage from are your ligaments and your disks.

What Are the Symptoms of Foraminal Narrowing?

Grade 0

No foraminal stenosis

Grade 1

You have a mild case of stenosis but there are no physical changes that would be seen in your nerve roots

Grade 2

You have a moderate case of stenosis but there is no physical change in the nerve roots

Grade 3

This is a severe case of foraminal stenosis where you nerve roots have already collapsed

How To Prevent Foraminal Narrowing in Florida?

The best thing that you could do to prevent foraminal narrowing is by staying physically active, physically fit, maintaining a healthy weight, and living a healthy lifestyle because these would be able to help you reduce any risk since it really is not something that you could prevent. 

Make sure that you have good posture while you are sitting down, exercise daily, lift heavy objects, and play sports are also some of the things that you could do that could prevent you from having any kind of back injury. But of course, you have to do these properly because when your back gets injured, it could lead to stenosis and your nerves being pinched.