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Told to have stenosis in lower back from X-ray. Problem in walking and climbing stairs. Cure?

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Internal Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 2005
Answered : 507 Questions
I was told that I have stenosis in the lower back from an exray. I want to know if there is any cure other than surgery and isn't surgery always a huge risk in this area of your body. I do excercises twice a week and sometimes more. I can do a hundred sit ups which isn't bad for an octogenarian, push ups and fifty knee bends with my back against the wall. I can pull my legs back over my head when laying flat on the floor without pain. My problem is walking and climbing steps. It's a mystery why I can't walk far without great effort. Any suggestions.
XXXXXX, New Jersey USA
Posted Tue, 28 May 2013 in Brain and Spine
Answered by Dr. Omer 1 hour later

Thanks for your question.

My name is Dr Omer and I am here to help you today with your question. I will be happy to assist you with your follow up questions also. I am sorry to hear about your problem

As you have told your disease symptoms so clearly that the problem you are faced is known as Claudications.

Claudication means limping after few paces, claudications can be caused by either VASCULAR or NEUROGENIC reasons.

As you have said you have stenosis on x-ray, it is really difficult to tell on xray that you have stenosis, you need MRI spine.

Stenosis mostly occurs in the lumbar reason so muscle stiffness is there
You said you can do sit ups easily (flexion at spine), pushups bending your feet over head all pointing to vascular reasons.

The hallmark of vascular claudication is difficulty in walking after few paces and climbing stairs
And as your age is 80 years you may have athersclerosis in your leg or femoral vessels
So your diagnosis is VASULAR CLAUDICATION DUE TO ATHEROSCLEROSIS OF VESSELS OF LEG, get a Doppler scan of your leg and you will find the reason of difficulty walking and your lumbar stenosis is not causing the problem.

So treatment of vascular claudication is by-pass of arteries (diseased) in leg.

You don’t require laminectomy or intervertebral spacer procedures for lumbar stenosis now.

I wish you good luck that you get well soon, if you have any question, please ask. I will be glad to assist you always.

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