Archive for category pain

Facet Joint Health, Low Back Pain and Upper Back Pain review by KBNI Houston, Kingwood, Spring, Sugarland, Katy, Pearland, Baytown, Beaumont, Clear Lake, Memorial City, the Woodlands

facet joint, low back pain, back pain, physical therapy, spinal column, spondylolisthesis, spinal

facet joint, low back pain, back pain, physical therapy, spinal column, spondylolisthesis, spinal

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Facet Joint Health, Low Back Pain and Upper Back Pain

Simply put, the facet joint links the vertebrae of the human spinal column and allow for the articulation of the spine. When they facet joints are not functioning properly, or when they become degenerated, develop arthritis, or slip, they may be the cause of low back pain and upper back pain.  In addition to providing mobility, the facet joints also help stabilize the spinal column by being oriented in such a way that they decrease the chances of preventing forward vertebral slippage (spondylolisthesis). The ends of the facet joints are covered in cartilage, which allows for pain-free operation over a normal range of motion (bending, twisting, lifting, sitting, standing, etc.). While the cartilage does break down naturally over time (in this manner resembling cartilage in other parts of the body), the facet joints are still quite durable if direct physical trauma (such as from an accident) is not an issue. The condition known as spondylolisthesis exists when one vertebral body is slipped forward upon the vertebral body below.  This is also known as anterolisthesis.  When the vertebral body is slipped backward upon the vertebral body below, the condition is known as retrolisthesis.  Spondylolisthesis may occur as a result of degenerative changes of the facet joint.  When a patient has a condition known as spondylolysis, the patient is prone to develop spondylolisthesis.  Spondylolysis is a condition where there is a gap in what may be considered the roof over the spinal canal.  It may occur from an injury, or a person may be born with it.  When this condition occurs, the facet joint is no longer able to help support the vertebral bodies from slipping forward upon each other, and instead, all of this burden is placed upon the intervertebral disc, which separates two adjacent vertebral bodies.  Spondylolisthesis, whether anterolisthesis or retrolisthesis, may be related to low back pain or upper back pain, as it relates to possible instability of the spinal column.

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facet joint, low back pain, back pain, physical therapy, spinal column, spondylolisthesis, spinal

 

With all of these essential functions, the facet joints are a little-known but important means to preventing low back pain and upper back pain. These joints, along with spinal discs (the shock-absorbing pads between our vertebrae) help relieve pressure on the spinal nerves during routine motion, lowering the incidence of nerve compression (and accompanying sharp low back pain). Over time, however, the facet joints begin to break down just like any other mechanical component in the human body. Repetitive bending, lifting, and twisting can all accelerate the natural degenerative processes in the human spinal column, and the facet joints are no exception. The cartilage on the ends of the joints breaks down as spinal discs become thinner, harder, and less capable of bearing shock as we grow older. All of this leads to higher incidence of compressed (pinched) spinal nerves, which in turn can cause muscle weakness, numbness, low back pain, upper back pain, and decreases in overall mobility.

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As such, maintaining the health of our facet joints as we age should be a priority for everyone. Patients with chronic low back pain and upper back pain are advised to explore the option of physical therapy or chiropractic designed specifically for the spine. Typically, spine-specific physical therapy programs use a regimen of core-strengthening exercises to build muscles along the spinal column and throughout the torso. Stronger core muscles are more capable of relieving load-bearing stress on other degenerated portions of the spine, such as the discs and facet joints. Continuing physical therapy at home will also help back pain patients maintain optimal muscle mass as they age, which will in turn lower the incidence of injury, low back pain  and increase overall mobility. Patients are advised to consult their physicians prior to beginning any physical therapy regimen to ensure they do not have any structural deformities that would be exacerbated by an exercise program. Imaging tests (x-rays, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) ) may be necessary to confirm this, depending on the physician’s findings during your physical exam.  Standing low back x rays in flexion and extension will show whether spondylolisthesis is stable, or whether it moves.

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Low back pain is one of the most common reasons for individuals to visit their doctor, and for loss of work.  Finding the source of the low back pain is important, before the low back pain can be addressed, and treatment begun.  Causes of low back pain include the facet joint, the spinal disc itself, the ligaments attached to the low back spinal column, the nerves leaving the spine in the low back, and the muscles which attach to, and create movement in the low back.

 

 

The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX takes care of patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Pearland, Galleria, Beaumont, Baytown, Clear Lake, Port Arthur, Katy, the Woodlands, Spring, Memorial City, Humble, Kingwood, Conroe, Tomball, Missouri City, Texas City, and Texas Medical Center (TMC)

 

Patients suffering from a low back pain or neck pain, or who have been told they may require a low back surgery or neck sugery, can

contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

…….  Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to schedule an appointment online

……. KBNI VIDEO on Back and Neck Pain Treatment : Don’t Live in Fear and Pain

 

 

Keywords: facet joint, low back pain, back pain, physical therapy, spinal column, spondylolisthesis, spinal, Houston, Pearland, Galleria, Beaumont, Baytown, Clear Lake, Port Arthur, Katy, the Woodlands, Spring, Memorial City, Humble, Kingwood, Conroe, Tomball, Missouri City, Texas City, TMC, Texas Medical Center

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Automobile Accidents, Truck Accidents, Car Accidents and the Spine, review by Kraus Back and Neck Institute Houston, Baytown, Beaumont, Port Arthur, Sugarland, Katy, Spring, Pearland, Woodlands, Kingwood

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Automobile Accidents, Truck Accidents, Car Accidents and the Spine

 

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Automobile accidents, arising from motor vehicle injuries or truck accident injuries,  are the most common source of new spinal cord injuries, accounting for roughly 35% of new injuries in a given year. Unfortunately, the nature of automobile and other motor vehicle accidents’ (including motor vehicle injuries and truck accidents) effects on patients is inherently unpredictable: the extent of the spinal cord injury depends upon the types of vehicles involved, how fast they were moving, which direction they were traveling at the point of impact, and a variety of other mechanical factors, not to mention the age and physical health of the vehicles’ passengers. Quick changes in direction (much faster than the body is normally subjected to) with massive inertial forces behind these changes can cause serious trauma within the spinal column. The body adjusts well to its own changes in direction, but when these large external forces act on the body, they can cause what is commonly known as whiplash: the body’s cervical facet joints  are hyperextended from the initial impact, then they “whip” back as the reactive force comes through, which can cause inflammation and severe pain, as well as permanent damage to spinal anatomy including discs, vertebrae, and spinal nerves.

 

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Whiplash isn’t the only possible cause for injury to the spinal column during automobile accidents, however. Those same enormous forces resulting from the impact can crush parts of the spinal column, fragmenting vertebral bone and disc material. These cases are particularly dangerous, because if these shards pierce the walls of the spinal canal (the membraned structure that runs most of the length of the spinal column and houses the major tracts of spinal nerves), these nerves can suffer irreparable nerve damage. We depend on functional spinal nerves for interpreting fundamental motor control signals sent by the brain, as well as interpreting sensory data collected from other parts of the body. The spinal nerves sometimes cannot heal themselves if they are damaged, often meaning that a spinal cord injury has drastic negative consequences for a patient’s long-term mobility. Whiplash, paralysis, numbness, weakness, pain, deformity, and bowel and bladder problems are all potential consequences of spinal injury resulting from automobile accidents and from truck accidents.  Paralysis may occur focally in a limb, if the nerves to a limb are injured or severed.  Paralysis can also occur when the spinal cord itself is severely injured.  Bowel and bladder dysfunction may occur when there is damage to the spinal cord.

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Fortunately, many injuries sustained during automobile accidents, whether they be car accidents or truck accidents,  may be successfully rehabilitated with spinal physical therapy, with the caveat of no permanent damage to the spinal nerves. As long as patients retain motor control, the long-term prognosis at maintaining their mobility through regular spinal physical therapy and spinal injury rehabilitation exercises is quite good. These rehabilitation exercises focus on re-building range of motion, flexibility, strength, and endurance, re-stabilizing the spinal column by core strengthening all the core muscles along the spine and throughout the torso. Once patients complete a spinal physical therapy program, they are advised to continue the exercises indefinitely in a home setting in order to maximize benefits to their long-term mobility.

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Physicians at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston, have significant experience treating patients who have suffered from motor vehicle injuries and truck accident injuries.  They not only treat patients from the medical aspect, but are very well versed in working with excellent attorneys to help the patients.  The KBNI treats patients in Houston as well as surrounding areas including Katy, Spring, Woodlands, Sugarland, Beaumont, Baytown, Pearland, Conroe, Port Arthur.

Patients suffering from neck pain or lower back pain and have been in a motor vehicle injury or truck injury, or who have been told they may require a spine surgery, can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

…….  Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT ONLINE

……. KBNI VIDEO on Back and Neck Pain Treatment : Don’t Live in Fear and Pain

 

 

Keywords: spinal nerves, spinal, automobile accidents, accidents, truck accidents, motor vehicle injuries, spinal cord injury, spinal column, paralysis, bowel and bladder, numbness, nerves, injuries, pain, whiplash, weakness, Houston, Baytown, Beaumont, Port Arthur, Sugarland, Katy, Spring, Pearland, Woodlands, Kingwood, Conroe

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The Spinal Column during a Spinal Injury review by Kraus Back and Neck Institute Houston, Baytown, Beaumont, Port Arthur, Sugarland, Katy, Spring, Pearland, Woodlands, Kingwood

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spinal cord injury, spinal column, spinal nerves, compression fracture, nerves, spinal, injury, vertebral, accident

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The Spinal Column during a Spinal Injury review

 

Though it is less flexible than many of its mammalian counterparts, the human spinal column is normally a durable structure capable of a wide variety of movements. During a spinal cord injury, however, everything can change as a patient’s long-term mobility is threatened. The spinal canal houses the spinal nerves and runs most of the length of the spinal column. During a spinal cord injury, sometimes the trauma is forceful enough to propel shards of vertebral bone or spinal disc material through the walls of the spinal canal and threaten the integrity of the spinal nerves.

Spinal cord damage is perhaps the most serious consequence of a spinal cord injury, given that we depend on the spinal cord to function properly in order to interpret sensory data (touch, pain, heat, cold, etc.) as well as to relay motor control signals from the brain. The spinal cord also has no native regenerative capacity, meaning that it cannot heal from physical trauma. Even bruising the spinal cord can be enough to permanently reduce a patient’s mobility. Sometimes, depending on the extent of the bruising and the age and physical health of the patient, mobility may be regained after the initial inflammation subsides.

 

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Following the accident, assessing the full extent of the damage becomes doctors’ first priority as they attempt to find an effective course of treatment. Oftentimes back spine surgery is necessary in order to remove portions of vertebral bone or herniated disc material that may be threatening other spinal nerves. If the nerves themselves are damaged, patients may experience muscle weakness, numbness, and permanent mobility loss. Extensive long-term physical therapy is also necessary in order to keep the patient’s range of motion from decaying.

Automobile accidents, including major or minor motor vehicle accidents, as well as truck accidents, and falls, may  commonly cause compression fractures, during which the spinal column experiences forces which crush vertebral bone and disc material. Depending on the direction of the forces, the spinal column may be contorted in a wide variety of ways. This makes predicting the extent of injury quite difficult, which is one of the reasons why first responders typically set about immobilizing the patient as soon as possible in order to minimize the possibility of further damage. Though compression fractures within the spinal column can definitely cause long-lasting damage, doctors can sometimes minimize permanent mobility loss if they are able to access the patient in a timely manner. Ultimately, a patient’s long-term mobility prospects rest with the extent of the damage to the spinal nerves. Medical researchers will continue their work to imbue the spinal nerves with regenerative capacity in the coming decades.

Patients may need the assistance of physicians to deal with the medical issues, and lawyers / attorneys who specialize in personal injuries, such as motor vehicle accidents or truck accidents.

 

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spinal cord injury, spinal column, spinal nerves, compression fracture, nerves, spinal, injury, vertebral, accident, Houston, Baytown, Beaumont, Port Arthur, Sugarland, Katy, Spring, Pearland, Woodlands, Kingwood

 

Physicians at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston, have significant experience treating patients who have suffered from motor vehicle injuries and truck accident injuries.  They not only treat patients from the medical aspect, but are very well versed in working with excellent attorneys to help the patients.  The KBNI treats patients in Houston as well as surrounding areas including Katy, Spring, Woodlands, Sugarland, Beaumont, Baytown, Pearland, Conroe, Port Arthur.

Patients suffering from neck pain or lower back pain and have been in a motor vehicle injury or truck injury, or who have been told they may require a spine surgery, can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

…….  Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT ONLINE

……. KBNI VIDEO on Back and Neck Pain Treatment : Don’t Live in Fear and Pain

 

 

Keywords: spinal cord injury, spinal column, spinal nerves, compression fracture, nerves, spinal, injury, vertebral, accident, Houston, Baytown, Beaumont, Port Arthur, Sugarland, Katy, Spring, Pearland, Woodlands, Kingwood

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Frequently Asked Questions Regarding the Legal Aspects of Spinal Injury review by Kraus Back and Neck Institute Houston, Baytown, Beaumont, Port Arthur, Sugarland, Katy, Spring, Pearland, Woodlands, Kingwood

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Frequently Asked Questions Regarding the Legal Aspects of Spinal Injury

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contingent fee basis, health insurance, spinal injury, back pain, injury, spinal, pain, lawyers, settlement, legal, contingency


 

Perhaps one of the most common questions asked in the wake of a spinal injury is: where do I begin? Dealing with newfound immobility can be traumatizing, and patients generally have a long road of healing, recovery, and physical rehabilitation ahead of them with no guarantees of recouping the mobility they may have lost. Family members and friends of the patient should work on organizing legal counsel for the victim. Be forthcoming with all the details of the accident. Personal injury lawyers need to have all the pertinent facts of the case in order to have the best chance at reaching a settlement for the patient.

Many spinal injury patients may understandably be concerned with the financial aspects of their recovery. After all, healthcare in the US is remarkably expensive relative to many other first-world nations, and spinal injuries necessitate a variety of expensive treatments, especially if the patient’s mobility has been permanently compromised. Fortunately, most personal injury lawyers work on a contingent fee basis / contingency , meaning that they only receive compensation if they are able to secure a claim for the patient. Otherwise, the patient is not responsible for compensating their services. If a settlement is indeed reached, however, the patient does not receive the full amount. His or her lawyers are then compensated for their services from the settlement. Even with a contingent fee basis / contingency, the patients may be responsible for other legal fees depending on their locality and circumstances of their injury.  Most cases are handled on a contingent fee basis / contingency, and fee for service is infrequently used.

 

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Costs do not end there, however, especially if the patient has experienced a permanent injury. Long-term physical therapy and rehabilitation are often necessary to make sure the patient’s mobility does not undergo further decay. Patients may experience extremely sharp back pain during the first few months of post-operative care, since traditional back surgery involves long, deep incisions that take months to heal completely. The extent of the surgery will of course be dependent on the severity and location of the patient’s injury. Back pain will also fluctuate depending on if the spinal nerves were permanently damaged. Normally, the spinal nerves serve as pathways for motor control signals from the brain, as well as helping the body to interpret external stimuli (pressure, heat, cold, pain, etc.). If the injury damages the spinal nerves, they do not recover, since they have no native regenerative capacity. In these cases, patients may lose partial or total sensation below the point of injury, which minimizes back pain but obviously causes much more serious problems with long-term mobility.

 

 

 

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Keywords: contingent fee basis, health insurance, spinal injury, back pain, injury, spinal, pain, lawyers, settlement, legal, contingency, Houston, Baytown, Beaumont, Port Arthur, Sugarland, Katy, Spring, Pearland, Woodlands, Kingwood

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The Legal and Ethical Aspects of a Spinal Injury review by Kraus Back and Neck Institute Houston, Baytown, Beaumont, Port Arthur, Sugarland, Katy, Spring, Pearland, Woodlands, Kingwood

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The Legal and Ethical Aspects of a Spinal Injury

 

 

Spinal injuries present difficult decisions to all parties involved. Patients must decide how to best file a claim for compensation, which is a decision not taken lightly, especially if the patient is struggling with major back pain and a downgraded quality of life as a result of the accident. Patients are advised to pursue a full medical examination to corroborate their evidence for a potential claim, given that settlements are typically decided based on how much the spinal injury in question has changed the patient’s quality of life. Doctors will perform range of motion tests as well as interpreting data from numerous imaging exams (x-rays, magnetic resonance imaging) in order to evaluate the patient’s possibilities for long-term recovery.

 

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spinal injury, back pain, contingency fee basis, patient advocate, patients, injury, spinal, claim, compensation, insurance, settlement


If the spinal nerves are damaged, however, patients generally stand to receive some sort of financial compensation, since the spinal nerves lack native regenerative capacity. When they receive sufficient trauma, they are no longer capable of performing their normal functions: interpreting sensory data from external stimuli as well as motor control signals from the brain. Patients with damaged spinal nerves face an increased likelihood of permanent paralysis, usually losing control and sensation at or below the point of the spinal injury.

 

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spinal injury, back pain, contingency fee basis, patient advocate, patients, injury, spinal, claim, compensation, insurance, settlement

 

It’s extremely important that patients remain honest and forthcoming with their legal and medical representatives during the claim process. Consider consulting patient advocates (laypersons who specialize in knowledge of the healthcare industry) for extra information regarding how health insurance companies influence the process. Patients need to be very familiar with their own health insurance coverage plans and motor vehicle insurance plan, especially if they intend to pursue a claim.

 

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spinal injury, back pain, contingency fee basis, patient advocate, patients, injury, spinal, claim, compensation, insurance, settlement

When searching for a legal representative, keep in mind that most spinal injury / personal injury lawyers work on a contingency  fee basis, which means that they receive compensation only if they are successful in reaching a financial settlement for their clients. This means that any compensation due is then subtracted from the settlement in order to compensate the personal injury lawyers for their services. Patients can take solace in the fact that these law professionals and other patient advocates will work extremely hard in order to maximize such awards. Even with a contingency fee basis in place, however, patients still need to provide solid medical evidence that supports their claims regarding limited mobility. If the patient is subsequently found to have recovered much or even all of his or her movement, it’s highly unlikely a significant settlement will be reached.

 

Physicians at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston, have significant experience treating patients who have suffered from motor vehicle injuries and truck injuries.  They not only treat patients from the medical aspect, but are very well versed in working with excellent attorneys to help the patients.  The KBNI treats patients in Houston as well as surrounding areas including Katy, Spring, Woodlands, Sugarland, Beaumont, Baytown, Pearland, Conroe, Port Arthur.

Patients suffering from neck pain or lower back pain and have been in a motor vehicle injury or truck injury, or who have been told they may require a spine surgery, can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

contact us for help

 

…….  281-713-6296

…….  Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT ONLINE

……. KBNI VIDEO on Back and Neck Pain Treatment : Don’t Live in Fear and Pain

 

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Keywords: spinal injury, back pain, contingency fee basis, patient advocate, patients, injury, spinal, claim, compensation, insurance, settlement, Houston, Baytown, Beaumont, Port Arthur, Sugarland, Katy, Spring, Pearland, Woodlands, Kingwood

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Spinal Injury, Personal Injury Truck Injury Lawyer and the Law discussion KBNI Houston, Katy, Spring, Woodlands, Sugarland, Beaumont, Baytown, Pearland, Conroe, Port Arthur

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Spinal Injury, Personal Injury Truck Injury Lawyer and the Law

 

 

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spinal injury, Houston truck injury lawyer, attorney, personal injury, back pain, legal representation

Motor vehicle accidents involving cars and trucks are, unfortunately, quite common.  When a collision / motor vehicle accident occurs between a car and another car, or between a car and a truck, significant damage may occur to the passengers as well as to the vehicle.  Before anything else, protecting life and health is the most important.  Once this is accomplished, there is the reality of dealing with the damages to one’s own health, and any bodily injuries they may have suffered. There may be minor bruises and scrapes, or more major bodily injuries, or spinal injuries / back injury.  Frequently, at the scene of the accident, it is not clear to the accident victim as to how severe bodily damage may be.  For that reason, when the ambulance arrives at the scene of the accident, it is often a good idea to be taken to the nearest hospital emergency room, for evaluation. Many times, what seems to be minor injuries may develop into whiplash or serious injuries, with longstanding chronic pain.   In this article, we will focus on the legal aspects surrounding motor vehicle injuries, and not on the medical treatment of the injury.  A Houston personal injury lawyer or Houston truck accident lawyer may help give guidance or counseling.

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spinal injury, Houston truck injury lawyer, attorney, personal injury, back pain, legal representation

As much as patients might wish to focus on recovery and physical rehabilitation following their spinal injury, there can also be a sizable legal component to the process, especially if the patients are seeking any kind of monetary compensation for their injuries. Unfortunately for patients, laypersons are generally very poor at negotiating their own terms, particularly when pitted against companies who may have entire legal teams of their own. For those suffering from a spinal injury seeking compensation, it then becomes a matter of course to seek an attorney for legal representation attorney / lawyer of their own in order to have a chance at recouping a settlement.

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Much like providing quality information about your back pain to help your physician with making an effective diagnosis, your legal counsel / attorney will depend on you being forthcoming with information about your injury. If you have sustained permanent spinal damage ( back injury ) and / or a reduction in quality of life as a result of a spinal injury, pursuing a spinal injury claim through an attorney is one of the only legal options for seeking compensation. Your attorney will ask you very specific questions about the circumstances of your injury.  Patients should take the time to remember the events that transpired as clearly as possible. When it comes to the spinal injury itself, medical consultation with a spine surgeon / neurosurgeon will serve to corroborate the patient’s evidence. Describe your back pain and range of motion as accurately as possible to your legal representative / attorney, including specific adjectives like burning, stabbing, shooting, throbbing, etc. as well as recounting any activities that you now face difficulty in performing. All of these details are crucial in determining the net impact of the spinal injury on your day-to-day life.  The car  or truck injury victim may need extensive medical or surgical intervention, or may need rehabilitation / chiropractic treatment ( physical therapy or chiropractor ) , and may suffer from lost wages or future earning potential.

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spinal injury, Houston truck injury lawyer, attorney, personal injury, back pain, legal representation, Houston, Katy, Spring, Woodlands, Sugarland, Beaumont, Baytown, Pearland, Conroe, Port Arthur

Patients should also work with their motor vehicle insurance companies and the  insurance company of the other vehicle (car or truck)  to find out the specific details of their legal rights and coverage when it comes to pursuing a spinal injury claim. There are details of the law which pertain to what damages should be paid for by the individual’s motor vehicle insurance, and what should be covered by the motor vehicle insurance of the other care or truck involved in the collision.  The injury may not be covered under the passengers own private health insurance.  It is a good idea to ask the advice of their attorney ( personal injury attorney or truck accident lawyer ), before patients discuss too much, as there is a legal aspect to the case, which involves certain protocol and procedure with which the motor vehicle accident injury victim may not be familiar.

Physicians at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston, have significant experience treating patients who have suffered from motor vehicle injuries and truck injuries.  They not only treat patients from the medical aspect, but are very well versed in working with excellent attorneys to help the patients.  The KBNI treats patients in Houston as well as surrounding areas including Katy, Spring, Woodlands, Sugarland, Beaumont, Baytown, Pearland, Conroe, Port Arthur.

Patients suffering from neck pain or lower back pain and have been in a motor vehicle injury or truck injury, or who have been told they may require a spine surgery, can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

…….  Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT ONLINE

……. KBNI VIDEO on Back and Neck Pain Treatment : Don’t Live in Fear and Pain

 

Keywords: spinal injury, Houston truck injury lawyer, attorney, personal injury, back pain, legal representation, Houston, Katy, Spring, Woodlands, Sugarland, Beaumont, Baytown, Pearland, Conroe, Port Arthur

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What is Disc Degeneration in the Context of the Spine? KBNI Houston, Memorial City, Woodlands, Sugarland, Pearland, Katy, Spring, Conroe, Beaumont, Baytown

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What is Disc Degeneration in the Context of the Spine?

spinal discs, back pain, spinal nerves, physical therapy, degenerative disc disease, disc degeneration

spinal discs, back pain, spinal nerves, physical therapy, degenerative disc disease, disc degeneration

Degenerative disc disease (disc degeneration)  has proven to be a frightening diagnosis for many members of the public. Our spinal discs (the shock-absorbing pads between our vertebrae) are essential for a high quality of life. They cushion the load-bearing stress on the spinal column and along with the facet joints (the joints between our vertebrae) spinal discs help allow for the spinal column’s articulation during routine motion.

Over time, however, the spinal discs naturally degenerate (degenerative disc diseease) , becoming thinner, harder, drier, and less capable of absorbing shock. This means that vertebrae in the spinal column move closer together, placing nearby spinal nerves at a higher risk for compression. Degenerated spinal discs also directly impact a back pain patient’s mobility, given that the discs act somewhat like the shocks and suspension on an automobile a person with compromised discs is going to move more slowly and have a smaller range of motion.

spinal discs, back pain, spinal nerves, physical therapy, degenerative disc disease, disc degeneration

spinal discs, back pain, spinal nerves, physical therapy, degenerative disc disease, disc degeneration

Problems also surface when back pain patients are diagnosed with degenerative disc disease. Patients may be frightened at the condition getting worse to the point of paralysis or greatly decreased mobility. While advanced damage in your spinal discs is indeed cause for concern, there are many steps patients can take to mediate back pain and improve their quality of life as they age. First, don’t give up simply because of your diagnosis. Disc degeneration is a natural process. Degenerative disc disease  (disc degeneration) simply means your degeneration has progressed more quickly than is the norm.

spinal discs, back pain, spinal nerves, physical therapy, degenerative disc disease, disc degeneration, Houston, Memorial City, Woodlands, Sugarland, Pearland, Katy, Spring, Conroe, Beaumont, Baytown

spinal discs, back pain, spinal nerves, physical therapy, degenerative disc disease, disc degeneration, Houston, Memorial City, Woodlands, Sugarland, Pearland, Katy, Spring, Conroe, Beaumont, Baytown

Additionally, there are many steps patients can take at home to make sure they retain an acceptable range of motion and low-to-moderate pain levels. First, consider using over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen to mediate back pain when it reaches acute levels. Pain medication will provide temporary relief and restore mobility by reducing inflammation (anti-inflammatory effects)  along the spinal column (which, in a person with advanced degeneration of their spinal discs, will also help in relieving pressure on spinal nerves). A physical therapy or chiropractic regimen emphasizing core-strengthening exercises is also essential. Strong muscles throughout the torso and along the spinal column will relieve pressure from compromised spinal discs and help reduce the possibility for compressing spinal nerves. Patients also have the advantage of continuing these physical therapy / chiropractic exercises at home for an indefinite period of time, reducing medical costs and helping to maintain their mobility while reducing the possibility of further damage to the spinal discs themselves. Finally, physical therapy is an essential component in a healthy lifestyle that keeps weight at optimum levels, reducing the load-bearing stress on spinal discs and facet joints. Maintaining a healthy weight will further reduce the possibility of additional damage, while an unhealthy weight will increase the potential for nerve damage.

spinal discs, back pain, spinal nerves, physical therapy, degenerative disc disease, disc degeneration, Houston, Memorial City, Woodlands, Sugarland, Pearland, Katy, Spring, Conroe, Beaumont, Baytown

spinal discs, back pain, spinal nerves, physical therapy, degenerative disc disease, disc degeneration, Houston, Memorial City, Woodlands, Sugarland, Pearland, Katy, Spring, Conroe, Beaumont, Baytown

Physicians at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute treat patients with degenerative disc disease (disc degeneration).  The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX  cares for patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas Medical Center  (TMC), Tomball and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.  In most cases, non-surgical treatments are available, reserving surgery for those patients in whom conservative treatments do not provide sufficient pain relief.

If you have SUFFERED AN INJURY, you can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

 

…….  Or visit  www.SpineHealth.com  to schedule an appointment online

 

…….  KBNI VIDEO

 

 

Keywords: spinal discs, back pain, spinal nerves, physical therapy, degenerative disc disease, disc degeneration, Houston, Memorial City, Woodlands, Sugarland, Pearland, Katy, Spring, Conroe, Beaumont, Baytown

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How the Spine Develops as We Age review KBNI Houston, Beaumont, Baytown, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Pearland

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 How the Spine Develops as We Age   

 

 

spinal discs, spinal nerves, back pain, spinal column, Houston

spinal discs, spinal nerves, back pain, spinal column, Houston

The human spinal column is made up of vertebrae, ligaments, muscles, facet joints (the joints that link our vertebrae) and spinal discs (the shock-absorbing pads between our vertebrae). Spinal nerves wind their way around vertebrae and provide sensation to much of the body. All of these components interact to allow for a pain-free normal range of motion during routine movement. Since the spinal column is involved in almost every kind of human motion (sitting, standing, running, bending, lifting, twisting, etc.), pain-free articulation of the spinal column is essential for a high quality of life.

spinal discs, spinal nerves, back pain, spinal column, Houston

spinal discs, spinal nerves, back pain, spinal column, Houston

Though the human body may be an incredible machine, its mechanical components do not escape wear and tear. The cartilage on the ends of our facet joints naturally degrades over time and the wear is exacerbated by repeated heavy lifting or lifting combined with torsional (twisting) motion. This places nearby spinal nerves at a higher risk for nerve compression, which causes extreme back pain and decreased mobility. Since spinal discs naturally degenerate as we get older, becoming harder, less pliable, thinner, and less capable of bearing shock, the spinal nerves have a higher risk of compression, given that as spinal discs shrink, the distance between vertebrae lessens accordingly. Typically this means a smaller range of motion for back pain patients as they grow older.

spinal discs, spinal nerves, back pain, spinal column, Houston, Beaumont, Baytown, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Pearland, Sealy, Spring, Port Arthur, Conroe, Kingwood, Humble, Tomball, Galveston

spinal discs, spinal nerves, back pain, spinal column, Houston, Beaumont, Baytown, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Pearland, Sealy, Spring, Port Arthur, Conroe, Kingwood, Humble, Tomball, Galveston

Aging patients also need to account for the possible effects of osteoporosis (low bone density) on the spine. Poor nutrition, smoking (nicotine, a chemical in cigarettes, is toxic to bone-generating cells), and a lack of physical activity can all decrease bone mass. This in turn increases the risk of osteoporosis-related fractures. Fractures are especially dangerous within the spinal column, as shards of collapsed vertebrae or spinal discs may pierce the spinal canal and lacerate spinal nerves, putting the patient at risk for serious long-term health complications. Also, the fractures may occur so slowly that many patients may not notice any sudden changes in their back pain levels.

spinal discs, spinal nerves, back pain, spinal column, Houston, Beaumont, Baytown, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Pearland, Sealy, Spring, Port Arthur, Conroe, Kingwood, Humble, Tomball, Galveston

spinal discs, spinal nerves, back pain, spinal column, Houston, Beaumont, Baytown, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Pearland, Sealy, Spring, Port Arthur, Conroe, Kingwood, Humble, Tomball, Galveston

Even with all of these potentially serious problems, however, there are still steps you can take at home to keep your spinal column healthy as you age. Proper weight management will help reduce stress on the facet joints and spinal discs. Healthy dieting and nutritional supplements will help keep bone density at optimal levels. Physical therapy (particularly a regimen full of core-strengthening exercises) and chiropractic treatment by a chiropractor will develop muscles in the torso and along the spinal column. Stronger core muscles lessens the load from compromised spinal discs and helps patients mediate their back pain levels.

Physician experts at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston, TX, have significant experience and expertise in working with patients who are recovering from minor or major spine surgery.  They understand that the beginning of the healing process starts in the OR, but the remainder continues well after the surgery is finished.

The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX takes care of patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas Medical Center  (TMC), Tomball and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin

If you have SUFFERED AN INJURY, you can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

 

…….  Or visit  www.SpineHealth.com  to schedule an appointment online

 

…….  KBNI VIDEO

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Post-operative Care Questions for Lower Back Surgery Patients review by KBNI Houston, Woodlands, Kingwood, Katy, Pearland, Beaumont, Tomball, Baytown, Galveston, Sugarland

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Post-operative Care Questions for Lower Back Surgery Patients

post-operative care, low back pain, lower back surgery, physical therapy, surgical site infection, Houston

post-operative care, low back pain, lower back surgery, physical therapy, surgical site infection, Houston

 

Lower back surgery can be an incredibly trying endeavor for patients and physicians alike. Typically, lower back surgery is used as a last resort for patients whose back pain has not responded to more conservative treatments (i.e. rest, physical therapy, anti-inflammatory drugs, etc.). Though major back surgery is generally quite expensive and requires a long period of post-operative care, there are several steps patients can take to minimize recovery time and pain levels while maximizing their chances at retaining full mobility.

First, take your doctor’s recommendations very seriously. If he or she advises you on lifestyle changes to compensate for your decreased mobility during post-operative care, you must be willing to implement these changes. Many kinds of back surgery involve the implantation of screws and / or plates for a spinal fusion to stabilize different parts of the spinal column. Other surgeries implant entire artificial spinal discs (the shock-absorbing pads between our vertebrae) to correct the problems that natural spinal disc degeneration can cause (severe pain, destabilization, compressed spinal nerves).

post-operative care, low back pain, lower back surgery, physical therapy, surgical site infection, Houston

post-operative care, low back pain, lower back surgery, physical therapy, surgical site infection, Houston

Often deep incisions have to be made to implant these devices and consequently the muscles along the spinal column are lacerated. The spine takes time to heal and grow new tissue around these wounds. Patients may experience severe back pain and decreased spine mobility but are advised not to pursue strenuous activity without first consulting their physicians. Your doctor will be able to give you a much clearer idea of which activities pose a higher risk for your specific back surgery. Sticking to a strict activity regimen will help you reduce your risk of needing subsequent corrective surgeries.

After the surgery, physical therapy / chiropractic during post-operative care will help patients retain mobility, as well as building core strength and stretching for flexibility that will aid in preventing future injuries. Another problem you may wish to ask your doctor about is surgical site spine infection infection (SSI). Due to back surgery exposing the body to open air, pathogens may enter the incision site and cause infection at some point during post-operative care. It’s extremely important to get a family member or friend to monitor your wound during dressing changes. Look for oozing pus, red edges around the wound, and foul odors. It’s also possible that surgical site infection may occur as a result of contaminated medical devices. This infection is extremely dangerous, as the wound itself may not exhibit signs of infection. Monitor any changes in back pain, as well as any fever, numbness, or muscle weakness. If any of these symptoms occur, seek immediate medical attention.

post-operative care, low back pain, lower back surgery, physical therapy, surgical site infection, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas Medical Center  (TMC), Tomball

post-operative care, low back pain, lower back surgery, physical therapy, surgical site infection, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas Medical Center (TMC), Tomball

Physician experts at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston, TX, have significant experience and expertise in working with patients who are recovering from minor or major spine surgery.  They understand that the beginning of the healing process starts in the OR, but the remainder continues well after the surgery is finished.

The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX takes care of patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas Medical Center  (TMC), Tomball and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin

If you have SUFFERED AN INJURY, you can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

 

…….  Or visit  www.SpineHealth.com  to schedule an appointment online

 

…….  KBNI VIDEO

 

post-operative care, low back pain, lower back surgery, physical therapy, surgical site infection, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas Medical Center  (TMC), Tomball

post-operative care, low back pain, lower back surgery, physical therapy, surgical site infection, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas Medical Center (TMC), Tomball

 

Keywords: post-operative care, low back pain, lower back surgery, physical therapy, surgical site infection, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas Medical Center  (TMC), Tomball

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Long-term Physical Therapy and Chiropractic for the Spine review by KBNI Houston, Spring, Woodlands, Katy, Sugarland, Kingwood, Conroe, Beaumont, Baytown

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Long-term Physical Therapy and Chiropractic for the Spine

back pain, physical therapy, chiropractic, preventive lifestyle, spinal discs, Houston

back pain, physical therapy, chiropractic, preventive lifestyle, spinal discs, Houston

Back pain is incredibly common and is often the result of lifestyle. Repeated heavy lifting, twisting, and excessive articulation of the spinal column (such as during exercise) can all accelerate wear and tear on our spinal discs (shock-absorbing pads between our vertebrae) as well as the muscles and ligaments in our spinal column and the cartilage on the ends of our facet joints (the joints that allow the spinal column to articulate). Too much sedentary activity can also produce adverse changes in the spine, given that long periods of sitting and standing decrease oxygen flow to tensed muscles in the back, increasing the chances of back pain from muscle spasms and compressed spinal nerves.

back pain, physical therapy, chiropractic, preventive lifestyle, spinal discs, Houston

back pain, physical therapy, chiropractic, preventive lifestyle, spinal discs, Houston

All of these practices accelerate the natural degenerative processes in the spinal column. Our spinal discs naturally get harder, thinner, and less pliable as we grow older, making them less capable of bearing the shocks and stresses of routine movement. The cartilage on the ends of our facet joints naturally breaks down over time, also increasing the chances of compressed spinal nerves. If you are experiencing back pain that has lasted longer than a week, it’s important for you to take stock of your present condition: what are you doing in your life that could be contributing to your back pain? Seek medical attention and provide your physician with all the necessary information about your work history and family medical history. Honest communication from you will help your physician prescribe an effective course of treatment, one that likely includes physical therapy or chiropractic care for the spine.

Along with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), physical therapy or chiropractic treatment remains one of the best long term solutions for mediating back pain. Core strengthening exercises will help in developing muscles along the spinal column and throughout the torso, lessening the load on compromised spinal discs and decreasing the incidence of compressed spinal nerves. Many physical therapy exercises can also be done at home, providing back pain patients with an affordable solution to maximizing their long-term mobility and mediating pain levels.

back pain, physical therapy, chiropractic, preventive lifestyle, spinal discs, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston

back pain, physical therapy, chiropractic, preventive lifestyle, spinal discs, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston

Living a preventive lifestyle and encouraging back injury prevention is also an excellent supplement to a physical therapy regimen. Proper weight management, healthy dieting, hydration, adequate sleep, and regular cardiovascular exercise are all elements of a preventive lifestyle and serve to combat a wide variety of illnesses and conditions, back pain among them. Keeping your weight at a healthy level will reduce wear on your back muscles, spinal discs, facet joints, and all other joints in your body. Physical therapy will help maintain your strength and balance as you age, while a preventive lifestyle will help maintain your overall quality of life at a high level.

back pain, physical therapy, chiropractic, preventive lifestyle, spinal discs, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston

back pain, physical therapy, chiropractic, preventive lifestyle, spinal discs, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston

Doctors at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston have significant expertise treating many patients suffering from low back pain and neck pain, without the need for surgery on the spine.  When surgery is necessary, the latest techniques in minimally invasive surgery of the spine are available.

The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX takes care of patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas Medical Center  (TMC) and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.

If you have SUFFERED AN INJURY, you can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

…….  Or visit  www.SpineHealth.com  to schedule an appointment online

 

Keywords:   back pain, physical therapy, chiropractic, preventive lifestyle, spinal discs, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston

 

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Talking with Your Spine Surgeon – Neurosurgeon / Orthopedic Spine Surgeon by KBNI Houston Sugarland Woodlands Katy Pearland Galveston Beaumont Memorial City

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Talking with Your Spine Surgeon – Neurosurgeon / Orthopedic Spine Surgeon

 

back pain, orthopedic surgeon, neurosurgeon, pain levels, anti-inflammatory drugs, Houston

back pain, orthopedic surgeon, neurosurgeon, pain levels, anti-inflammatory drugs, Houston

 

 

Communicating about your back pain is the first step in setting down the road to recovery. The importance of communicating honestly with your physician cannot be overstated here. A physician’s ability to prescribe an effective course of treatment depends upon the information he or she receives from you. Considering that most chronic back pain is a result of lifestyle choices, this means your input could go a long way toward reducing your recovery time.

Physicians will likely ask you questions regarding your work and recreational histories, including detailed questions about any injuries. Be forthcoming with details about your pain levels, including descriptions of the location, duration, and intensity of your pain. Note how your pain levels change as you perform different activities, and let your doctors know which activities make it worse.

back pain, orthopedic surgeon, neurosurgeon, pain levels, anti-inflammatory drugs, Houston

back pain, orthopedic surgeon, neurosurgeon, pain levels, anti-inflammatory drugs, Houston

A physician arrives at a diagnosis after taking a detailed history from the patient about their Chief Complaint (CC) .  They then ask about a History of Present Illness (HPI) , which are detailed questions about what causes the symptoms, when they began, what makes them better or worse, how long they last.  The physician also asks about issues such as fevers (which might indicate presence of an infection) or a history of cancer (which might indicate that cancer may be involved).  The physician will also ask about family history, which may play a role in genetically inherited disorders.  The physician then will perform a comprehensive detailed physical examination, focusing on where the problem lies.  Then, the physician will order additional tests if needed.  These may include imaging studies, nerve studies (EMG/NCV), bone density studies, X rays, CT scans.

back pain, orthopedic surgeon, neurosurgeon, pain levels, anti-inflammatory drugs, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City

back pain, orthopedic surgeon, neurosurgeon, pain levels, anti-inflammatory drugs, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City

If your pain levels are severe and are not resolved with conservative treatments like physical therapy and anti-inflammatory drugs, you may wish to consult a spine surgeon – neurosurgeon or  orthopedic spine surgeon (though this will likely require a referral from your regular physician or specialist). Major back surgery is costly and necessitates a long recovery time, so doctors generally do not recommend it unless a patient’s chronic back pain is not adequately mediated by other treatments. Neurosurgeons and orthopedic spine surgeons may be able to provide you with helpful consultation on how to proceed with your treatment, but just like general physicians, surgeons depend on accurate information from you to find the best course of treatment. Prior to your back surgery, surgeons consult imaging exams (magnetic resonance imaging, x-rays, computerized tomography scans CT Scans) in order to better understand the cause behind your pain levels.

Both prior to surgery and during post-operative care, back pain patients should take advantage of anti-inflammatory drugs to regain mobility and reduce their pain levels. Over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drugs like naproxen and ibuprofen help to reduce inflammation in the body, which can be crucial during post-operative care depending on the length and depth of the incisions involved. Note that after a spinal fusion, your surgeon may want you to stay away from taking anti-inflammatory medications because they can impede the fusion process.  Inflammation is part of the body’s natural healing response to muscle trauma, but inflammation and arthritis along the spinal column can lead to compressed spinal nerves in patients with degenerated spinal disks (the shock-absorbing pads between our vertebrae).

back pain, orthopedic surgeon, neurosurgeon, pain levels, anti-inflammatory drugs, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City

back pain, orthopedic surgeon, neurosurgeon, pain levels, anti-inflammatory drugs, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City

Continue providing detailed information about your recovery to your spine surgeon (neurosurgeon or orthopedic spine surgeon) during your period of post-operative care. You will likely be subject to several post-operative checkups to monitor your progress. Remember that physicians will sometimes make adjustments according to the information you give them, so take detailed notes regarding your pain levels and provide truthful information at all times.

Physicians at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) have significant experience treating patients with a variety of causes of low back pain and neck pain.  Because of their diverse experience with conservative as well as surgical modes of treatment, they approach each patient with the treatments options which are best for the goals, desires and expectations of that patient.

The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX cares for patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center  (TMC) and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.

Patients suffering from neck pain or lower back pain, or who have been told they may require a spine surgery, can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

…….  Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT ONLINE

……. KBNI VIDEO on Back and Neck Pain Treatment : Don’t Live in Fear and Pain

 

 

Keywords: back pain, orthopedic surgeon, neurosurgeon, pain levels, anti-inflammatory drugs, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City

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Back Braces review by KBNI Houston, Woodlands, Sugarland, Katy, Memorial City, Kingwood, Pearland, Spring, Texas Medical Center

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Back Braces Review

 

spinal discs, spinal column, back brace, rigid braces, Houston

spinal discs, spinal column, back brace, rigid braces, Houston

Occasionally, physical trauma compromises the stability of the spinal column and causes extreme spine pain and back pain. Accidents, fractures, and degeneration in the spinal discs (shock-absorbing pads between our vertebrae) can all cause destabilization in the spinal column. Destabilization generally has serious consequences for patient mobility given that we depend on pain-free articulation of the spine for almost all of our routine daily movement (sitting, standing, bending, twisting, lifting, etc.). Destabilization represents a serious health risk to the long-term mobility of patients, as nearby spinal nerves may be compressed or lacerated from shards of vertebrae or spinal discs damaged by trauma. Vertebral bone must be given time enough to heal within a framework of relative immobility.

spinal discs, spinal column, back brace, rigid braces, Houston

spinal discs, spinal column, back brace, rigid braces, Houston

Back braces provide this framework during the post-operative course of treatment and give patients the stability they need for their bodies to re-fuse portions of the spinal column. Generally, back braces are divided into two principal categories: corset braces (also known as elastic braces) and rigid braces. Corset braces are on occasion recommended after spinal fusion surgery to limit a patient’s motion by not allowing them to bend forward. They are also sometimes used by workers who regularly engage in heavy lifting on the job. Under such conditions, corset braces help reduce the likelihood of trauma to spinal disks (slipped or herniated disks) and torn muscles along the spinal column.

spinal discs, spinal column, back brace, rigid braces, Houston, Woodlands, Sugarland, Katy, Memorial City, Kingwood, Pearland, Spring, Texas Medical Center, Conroe

spinal discs, spinal column, back brace, rigid braces, Houston, Woodlands, Sugarland, Katy, Memorial City, Kingwood, Pearland, Spring, Texas Medical Center, Conroe

Rigid braces, on the other hand, are contoured to the patient’s body and limit at least 50% motion of the spinal column. Rigid braces are hotter, more unwieldy, and more uncomfortable than corset braces. Both kinds of brace operate on the principle that bone grows best when little movement is involved, allowing our osteoblasts (bone tissue-generating cells) to bridge the fracture gap with as little interruption and difficulty as possible. Based on the patient’s individual healing progress as well as the nature of the trauma to the spinal column, decisions to employ back braces are typically made on a case-by-case basis.

spinal discs, spinal column, back brace, rigid braces, Houston, Woodlands, Sugarland, Katy, Memorial City, Kingwood, Pearland, Spring, Texas Medical Center, Conroe

spinal discs, spinal column, back brace, rigid braces, Houston, Woodlands, Sugarland, Katy, Memorial City, Kingwood, Pearland, Spring, Texas Medical Center, Conroe

While both rigid braces and corset braces are effective at minimizing motion during the healing process, they are by no means the only avenue of physical rehabilitation in which a patient should engage. Consult your physician regarding physical therapy or chiropractic rehabilitation to re-develop muscles along the spinal column. Developing strong core muscles throughout the torso will assist degenerated or destabilized spinal disks in managing the body’s weight distribution during routine movement. Frequent checkups with your physician will allow individualized adjustments to your course of treatment.

Physician experts at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston, TX have great experience in treating patients with low back pain, neck pain, and injuries to the neck and low back.  In the majority of cases, surgery can be avoided.

 

Patients suffering from neck pain or lower back pain, or who have been told they may require a spine surgery, can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

…….  Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT ONLINE

……. KBNI VIDEO on Back and Neck Pain Treatment : Don’t Live in Fear and Pain

 

 

Keywords: spinal discs, spinal column, back brace, rigid braces, Houston, Woodlands, Sugarland, Katy, Memorial City, Kingwood, Pearland, Spring, Texas Medical Center, Conroe, Galveston

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Spinal Nerve Compression: When to Seek Medical Consultation review by KBNI Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Kingwood, Humble, Memorial City, Tomball

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Spinal Nerve Compression: When to Seek Medical Consultation

Spinal Nerve Compression: When to Seek Medical Consultation review by KBNI Houston

Spinal Nerve Compression: When to Seek Medical Consultation review by KBNI Houston

Housed within the spinal canal, the spinal nerves provide sensation to most of the body. Generally, compressed spinal nerves happen as a result of age-related degeneration of the spinal discs (the shock-absorbing pads between our vertebrae). As we grow older, spinal discs become thinner, harder, and less pliable, reducing their ability to absorb the stresses of everyday movement. Spinal nerves may also be compressed through serious trauma, such as improper lifting techniques or accidents.

Back pain related to spinal nerve compression is generally quite sharp and significantly reduces mobility in patients. Immediate treatment options include over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), which often reduce pain levels enough for the patient to explore other options for treatment. Physical therapy or treatment by a chiropractor represent both a short-term and long-term solution, as strong muscles in the torso and along the spinal column will assist spinal discs in bearing the body’s stresses. This in turn will reduce the incidence of compressed spinal nerves.

spinal nerves, spinal discs, physical therapy, back pain, Houston,  Woodlands, Sugarland, Katy, Galleria, Memorial City, Kingwood, Humble, Spring, Beaumont, Tomball,  Port Arthur, Conroe

spinal nerves, spinal discs, physical therapy, back pain, Houston, Woodlands, Sugarland, Katy, Galleria, Memorial City, Kingwood, Humble, Spring, Beaumont, Tomball, Port Arthur, Conroe

Occasionally, more conservative treatments like physical therapy or treatment by a chiropractor and pain medication aren’t enough to treat a patient’s nerve-related back pain. When a patient experiences muscle weakness along with nerve pain, it’s time to explore other treatment options. Physicians will likely order imaging exams (magnetic resonance imaging, x-rays) to confirm that spinal nerves are being compressed, as well as what the offending structure (e.g. bone spur) might be. After thorough analysis, physicians can then make recommendations on augmenting physical therapy or treatment by a chiropractor to better suit the patient’s pain levels or explore other options entirely. Major back surgery may be necessary to mechanically decompress  the offending nerves or to remove the obstruction responsible for compression.

If patients are regularly experiencing compressed spinal nerves outside the context of heavy lifting, see your doctor. Provide detailed, truthful information regarding your work history, lifestyle, and exercise habits. Be sure to account for any recreational activities that may also have been responsible, as the physician can only make an accurate prescription for course of treatment if he or she has all the relevant information. Combined with the results of your imaging exams, physicians will then direct your course of treatment according to the severity of the nerve compression. Back surgery or surgery for herniated disc may be an option, but it is possible that more conservative treatments will mediate your back pain to the point where more extensive treatment will not be needed. It is advised that you immediately contact your physician if your pain becomes sharper and more constant, or if you experience muscle weakness or loss of bladder control. All of these issues can indicate impending nerve damage.

Neurosurgeons at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston, TX have significant experiencing treating pain and nerve compression.  When conservative measures fail, or if otherwise indicated, the latest techniques in minimally invasive spine surgery are used to help relieve pain.

spinal nerves, spinal discs, physical therapy, back pain, Houston,  Woodlands, Sugarland, Katy, Galleria, Memorial City, Kingwood, Humble, Spring, Beaumont, Tomball,  Port Arthur, Conroe

spinal nerves, spinal discs, physical therapy, back pain, Houston, Woodlands, Sugarland, Katy, Galleria, Memorial City, Kingwood, Humble, Spring, Beaumont, Tomball, Port Arthur, Conroe

The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX cares for patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center  (TMC) and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.

Patients suffering from neck pain or lower back pain, or who have been told they may require a spine surgery, can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

…….  Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT ONLINE

……. KBNI VIDEO on Back and Neck Pain Treatment : Don’t Live in Fear and Pain

 

 

Keywords: spinal nerves, spinal discs, physical therapy, back pain, Houston,

Woodlands, Sugarland, Katy, Galleria, Memorial City, Kingwood, Humble, Spring, Beaumont, Tomball,  Port Arthur, Conroe

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Cervical Disc Replacement, Houston, Katy, Sugarland, Memorial City, Texas

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CERVICAL DISC REPLACEMENT

cervical disc, spinal disc, pain levels, neck pain, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sugarland, Sealy, Pearland, Baytown, Beaumont, Tomball, Galleria, Humble

cervical disc, spinal disc, pain levels, neck pain, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sugarland, Sealy, Pearland, Baytown, Beaumont, Tomball, Galleria, Humble

The spinal discs (shock-absorbing pads between our vertebrae) help us manage the shocks and stresses of daily movement. Our spines are heavily involved in most kinds of motion (sitting, standing, bending, lifting, twisting, etc.). As such, the facet joints that link our vertebrae as well as the spinal discs between them need to be extremely durable and operate with low back and neck pain levels during normal motion. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Spinal structural deformities, trauma, heavy lifting, and inactivity can all play their part in compromising parts of the spinal column. The natural aging process compounds these factors due to the fact that spinal discs naturally degenerate over time. Spinal and cervical discs become thinner, harder, and less pliable as we age, and as a result they are far less capable of managing the stresses of daily life. We are also more likely to experience back and neck pain as a result of these changes.

All of these problems may create problems in the cervical discs in our necks. Since the neck is routinely engaged in movement, compromised cervical discs can severely affect mobility by causing pain during routine motion. Fortunately, there are a variety of strategies patients can use to mediate pain levels. Over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can help mediate pain levels while restoring enough mobility for patients to explore other treatment options. Physical therapy focuses on developing muscles along the spinal column and surrounding the neck to offer support to cervical discs and relieve some of the weight they would otherwise have to bear during routine movement.

For more serious cases, such as severe structural deformity, trauma, or extreme neck pain not resolved by more conservative treatments, cervical disc replacement or cervical fusion may be the best option, depending upon the specific findings, recommendations of the surgeon, and desires of the patient. Since this surgery may be both serious and financially costly, physicians typically do not recommend it unless the compromised cervical disc is threatening other functions in the body (causing a loss of sensation, impinging on nearby spinal nerves, causing muscle weakness, etc.). Bone spurs and compromised cervical discs are the most common causes and physicians operate primarily to maintain the patient’s long-term health, as opposed to simply seeking to reduce pain levels.  Of course, indications for surgery may vary from patient to patient.

Recovery for cervical disc replacement, like many types of spinal surgery, can be brief to more prolonged . Rest, a healthy diet, and regimens of physical therapy are necessary to re-develop damaged muscles and relieve some of the pressure on cervical discs. Your physician will likely order several checkups to maintain a sense of your progress and to readjust your course of treatment as needed.

The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX cares for patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center  (TMC) and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.

Keywords: cervical disc, spinal disc, pain levels, neck pain, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sugarland, Sealy, Pearland, Baytown, Beaumont, Tomball, Galleria, Humble, Conroe, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Memorial City, Galveston, Texas Medical Center (TMC), Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

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Infections, Pain and Back Surgery review by KBNI Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Sugarland, Galleria, Pearland, Kingwood, Spring, Memorial City, TMC

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Infections, Pain and Back Surgery Review

infections, back surgery, pain, Houston

infections, back surgery, pain, Houston

Physicians often advise back surgery as a last resort when more conservative treatment methods (anti-inflammatory drugs, rest, physical therapy) have failed to adequately reduce pain levels. Back surgery for pain is not only costly, but also occasionally  necessitates a long period of post-operative care during which patients must work to re-develop muscles damaged by the back surgery incisions. Patients often head into surgery aware of the recovery period, but they also need to prepare for the low but distinct possibility of surgical site infection during post-operative care.  Fortunately, infections from back surgery are an infrequent occurrence, but they must still be considered, watched, and prevented.

The extensiveness of some back surgeries may require deep or long incisions to provide the surgeon with adequate vision and access to damaged spinal discs or nerves. Major back surgery also goes hand-in-hand with a significant number of implanted devices, such as metal screws or plates ( back surgery fusion or spinal fusion )to stabilize a compromised spinal column. Though these materials are required to be sterile prior to surgery, they can still potentially become contaminated in various ways. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria, which are bacterial populations that have developed resistances to several conventional (and even some last-resort) antibiotics ( bacteria such as Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), represent an increasingly dire problem for hospitals worldwide. In cases of major back surgery, the risk of contamination is increased due to the physical procedure itself: internal parts of the body remain exposed to the surrounding air for several hours. Any bacteria that have survived on the operating staff or on the implantation devices are capable of causing problems for the patient during post-operative care.

infections, back surgery, pain, Houston

infections, back surgery, pain, Houston

Patients who want to minimize their recovery time and pain,  as well as reduce the possibility of secondary back surgery will regularly monitor their incision sites for signs of back surgery infection. Back surgery patients occasionally do not have much mobility during post-operative care (especially if the surgery was extensive, like a spinal fusion or artificial spinal disc implant), so patients will need to communicate their needs and pain issues to family and friends. Have them check for redness, swelling, pus, and foul odors around the incision site. Patients must pay  attention to their pain levels and note any sudden or drastic changes.

infections, back surgery, pain, Houston

infections, back surgery, pain, Houston

Risk factors of the patient which increase the risk of infection during back surgery include smoking, diabetes, malnutrition, obesity, and poor personal hygiene.   Hand washing is important before handling a wound.  In a hospital, all visitors, nurses and physicians should wash their hands before entering a patient’s room, as preventative care.   Patients who have any open sores or cuts on their body should alert the doctors and nurses before the back surgery, as the surgeon may potentially choose to cancel the operation until the open lesions heal.  If a patients suffers an infection post operatively, all visitors, nurses and physicians should wear protective attire upon entering the room.

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It’s also possible that a patient’s  infection may be entirely internal, without many symptoms around their incision site. They should monitor  pain levels, and check in with their physician if they  experience nausea, vomiting, chills, or fever. Depending on the location and severity of the infection, physicians will likely prescribe a course of treatment involving one or more courses of different antibiotics. In some cases, both surgical site infections and internal infections have the potential to reduce healing during post-operative care. Secondary surgeries may be necessary to correct the problems the infections create, and help relieve the pain they create.

The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX cares for patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center  (TMC) and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.

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infections, back surgery, pain, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sugarland, Sealy, Pearland, Baytown, Beaumont, Tomball, Galleria, Humble, Conroe, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Memorial City, Galveston, Texas Medical Center (TMC), Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

Keywords: infections, back surgery, pain, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sugarland, Sealy, Pearland, Baytown, Beaumont, Tomball, Galleria, Humble, Conroe, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Memorial City, Galveston, Texas Medical Center (TMC), Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

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Spinal Facet Joint Pain presented by KBNI Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Sugarland, Galleria, Pearland, Kingwood, Spring, Memorial City, TMC

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SPINAL FACET JOINT PAIN

spinal facet joint pain

spinal facet joint pain

A facet joint is a link between our vertebrae  within our spinal column, and can be the cause of pain within the spine. Regarding spinal anatomy, their ends are covered in cartilage, which allows for the relatively pain-free articulation of the spine during routine motion (sitting, standing, twisting, bending, lifting, walking, etc.). Over time, however, the cartilage covering the facet joints breaks down naturally as we age. Heavy lifting, poor weight management, improper lifting technique, and too much sedentary activity can all accelerate the breakdown of facet joint cartilage, increasing the chances of compressing nearby spinal nerves and causing extremely sharp back pain.  The spinal column can be the source of mechanical pain.

In many cases, imaging tests (x-rays, magnetic resonance imaging) will be necessary to confirm the diagnosis of a facet joint-related spinal  back pain. Your doctor will have to first rule out muscle tears and muscle spasms caused by oxygen-starvation in your back muscles (often occurring as the result of too much time spent in a sitting or standing position, which keeps muscles in the back in a highly tensed state). While a compromised facet joint is certainly a cause for concern, by no means is the problem untreatable. Many patients are able to successfully mediate their pain levels at home, without having to explore the possibility of spinal back surgery.

spinal facet joint pain

spinal facet joint pain

In order to treat back pain caused by degenerating facet joints, most patients effectively mediate their pain levels using over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Pain medication usually restores enough temporary mobility to explore other long-term treatments, such as physical therapy. Patients may use a physical therapy or chiropractor / chiropractic regimen to develop muscles along the spinal column, which in turn will relieve load stress from compromised spinal discs (the shock-absorbing pads between our vertebrae) and facet joints alike. During your physical therapy or chiropractor / chiropractic regimen, several checkups will likely be necessary in order for your physician to accurately gauge your progress and recommend changes to your course of treatment.

If the cartilage has worn to the point where nearby spinal nerves are at risk, back surgery may be necessary to preserve a patient’s long-term health and mobility. Regular spinal nerve compression can lead to muscle weakness, sharp back pain, and eventual nerve damage and loss of sensation in other parts of the body. If you experience any of these symptoms, seek medical attention as soon as possible to determine if parts of your spinal discs or facet joints are responsible. If back / spine surgery is needed, your physicians can offer excellent advice on your post-operative care period, including incremental increases in physical therapy to preserve (and in some cases improve) patient mobility.

 facet joint, spinal, pain, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sugarland, Sealy, Pearland, Baytown, Beaumont

facet joint, spinal, pain, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sugarland, Sealy, Pearland, Baytown, Beaumont

Generally, spinal facet joint pain can be diagnosed by having a physician (spine surgeon, neurosurgeon, pain specialist) perform a facet joint block.  This procedure “numbs” the nerves (medial branch of nerves)  traveling to the facet joint.  If the block is successful at relieving the pain, it can be concluded that the pain is coming from the facet joint.  At that point, a more permanent facet joint rhizotomy, in which the nerves to the facet are destroyed (with thermal coagulation, also known as a rhizotomy) , may be of good benefit (after undergoing two trails of a facet joint nerve block).  A fusion of the spine (ALIF, TLIF, XLIF, PLIF, DLIF) can also help with pain coming from the facet joint, as the fusion will immobilize the joint.

Physician experts at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston, TX, have significant experience in diagnosing and treating spinal facet joint pain.  The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX cares for patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center  (TMC) and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.

 facet joint, spinal, pain, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sugarland, Sealy, Pearland, Baytown, Beaumont

facet joint, spinal, pain, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sugarland, Sealy, Pearland, Baytown, Beaumont

Keywords: facet joint, spinal, pain, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sugarland, Sealy, Pearland, Baytown, Beaumont, Tomball, Galleria, Humble, Conroe, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Memorial City, Galveston, Texas Medical Center (TMC), Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

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Lower Back Pain, Neck Pain and Disc Myths by by KBNI Houston, Katy, Spring, Kingwood, Conroe, Woodlands, Sugarland, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center TMC

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Lower Back Pain, Neck Pain and Disc Myths, Houston

lower back pain, neck pain, disc, Houston

lower back pain, neck pain, disc, Houston

Lower back pain and neck pain are incredibly common afflictions in the modern workplace, but many members of the public entertain harmful myths about how to treat them. For example, a large portion of the public believes that rest is the most effective way to treat chronic lower back pain or neck pain. While rest is definitely a component of the solution, long periods of sedentary activity can actually lengthen recovery time and reduce long-term mobility. Most mild to moderate lower back pain and neck pain is more effectively mediated by exercise.

lower back pain, neck pain, disc, Houston

lower back pain, neck pain, disc, Houston

Part of the rest myth may stem from yet another myth perpetuated about the spine: that it is weak or somehow fragile. In truth, the spine is an incredibly strong, durable part of the body that hosts a complicated system of muscles, ligaments, bones, and spinal disc (the shock-absorbing pads between our vertebrae). Rather than be compromised by exercise, the spine thrives on it. We need regular cardiovascular exercise, stretching, and strength conditioning in order to optimally maintain our spinal column as we age, given that we undergo a number of natural degenerative processes as we grow older. The cartilage on the ends of our facet joints (the joints that link our vertebrae and allow for the articulation of the spinal column) naturally degrades in quality, and this process is accelerated by extra weight and lack of exercise. Our spinal disc become thinner, harder, drier, and less capable of bearing stress during our routine movements. Both of these changes contribute to an increased incidence of compressed spinal nerves, which can cause severe lower back pain and compromise mobility.

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Due to these natural degenerative processes, many people may feel that a decline in their mobility is inevitable and that severe lower back pain and neck pain must correlate with severe structural damage in the spinal column. Fortunately, chronic lower back pain and neck pain most often does not necessarily mean that a patient’s spine is severely damaged. Some patients may have relatively little damage within the spinal column but still suffer from debilitating pain because of higher sensitivity to pressure placed on the spinal nerve roots. For example, if the tough exterior of a spinal disc wears to the point where a bit of the soft inner material of the disc protrudes through a hole in the exterior (hernia), patients will have a wide variety of responses based on individual pain tolerance as well as sensitivity of the spinal nerves themselves. Seek a full physical examination from a medical profession to confirm the source of your back pain and begin an effective course of treatment.

Physicians at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI), located in Houston, TX, specialize in treating patients with lower back pain and neck pain.  The majority of patients can be treated, and achieve significant improvement in their lower back pain and neck pain, without the need of an operation.  When surgery on the disc or spine is needed, neurosurgeons at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute offer the most current and advanced techniques in minimally invasive spine surgery.

lower back pain, neck pain, disc, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Sugarland, Texas Medical Center, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

lower back pain, neck pain, disc, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Sugarland, Texas Medical Center, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX cares for patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center  (TMC) and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.

Patients suffering from neck pain or lower back pain, or who have been told they may require a spine surgery, can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

…….  Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to schedule an appointment online

……. KBNI VIDEO on Back and Neck Pain Treatment : Don’t Live in Fear and Pain

Keywords: lower back pain, neck pain, disc, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Sugarland, Texas Medical Center, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

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Holistic Acupuncture and Back Pain by KBNI Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Sugarland, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center TMC

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acupuncture, holistic, back pain, Houston

acupuncture, holistic, back pain, Houston

Holistic Acupuncture and Back Pain in Houston

Acupuncture is longstanding tradition in Eastern medicine.  Acupuncture is considered holistic medicine.  An acupuncture expert (acupuncturist)  inserts several thin needles just under the surface of the patient’s skin in various pre-determined positions. These positions correspond to the 2,000+ pressure points that acupuncturists believe correspond to 20 primary pathways (called meridians in the theory of acupuncture). The basic principle of holistic acupuncture is that the body has several natural energy pathways (meridians) and if one or more of these pathways are blocked, qi (life-force) cannot flow properly and a variety of negative conditions result. In traditional Eastern medicine, qi’s proper flow can be restored through stimulating key points on the body with acupuncture needles.  Holistic acupuncture has been used to treat low back pain.

acupuncture, holistic, back pain, Houston

acupuncture, holistic, back pain, Houston

As one might imagine, the efficacy (ability of a treatment or drug to achieve a positive result on a consistent basis in many patients) of holistic acupuncture has not been proven in Western evidence-based medicine. Healthcare in the Western world is organized around the principle of treating specific conditions with specific treatments and / or drugs. Doctors first conduct physical exams to narrow possible causes (such as for the origin of a patient’s back pain) and then, if necessary, additional specialist opinions or additional testing confirms or reassesses the diagnosis. From that point, a patient receives a specific course of treatment designed to cure him or her of the condition.

Acupuncture, on the other hand, takes a holistic approach. Rather than focus on treating a specific condition in an exact, proven way, holistic acupuncture stimulates the central nervous system in hopes that nerve activity will have a positive effect on personal well-being. While these claims have not been proven by evidence-based medicine, acupuncture does succeed in stimulating the central nervous system. Many patients have given reports of feeling energized and relaxed as the needles stimulate activity in the brain and spinal cord. This practice may be effective for some back pain patients who suffer from increased muscle tension throughout the neck, shoulders, and spinal column. Stimulating nerves along tensed muscles can promote blood flow, which brings much-needed oxygen and nutrition as well as helps to prevent muscle spasms.

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acupuncture, holistic, back pain, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Sugarland, Texas Medical Center, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

Though the holistic claims made for acupuncture by Eastern medicine may be tempting to take at face value, patients are advised to conduct further testing to ensure they do not have a more serious condition. Back pain patients who experience relief from holistic acupuncture are not likely to have a severe structural defect within the spinal column, but it is important to confirm the diagnosis of back pain with a complete physical exam by a Western physician. Additional imaging tests (x-rays, magnetic resonance imaging, CT scans, x rays) can reveal if there are underlying structural issues which need to be addressed with more serious treatment.

There is no question that the ability to treat back pain, neck pain, and other types of pain with a variety of modalities is beneficial to the patient.  Although traditional Western Medicine is often very beneficial, a more holistic Eastern Medicine approach has a  role in the health care system.  At the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston, TX, a variety of modality and treatment options are available to help patients suffering from low back pain, neck pain, and other pain disorders affecting the body.  Expert neurosurgeons at the KBNI utilize non-surgical options when appropriate, often keeping surgical intervention as a measure of last resort, when other conservative methods fail.

The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX takes care of patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center  (TMC) and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.

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Keywords: acupuncture, holistic, back pain, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Sugarland, Texas Medical Center, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

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Proper Lifting, Posture and Low Back Pain review by KBNI Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Sugarland, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center TMC

 

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spine, low back pain, proper lifting, posture,  Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Sugarland, Texas Medical Center

spine, low back pain, proper lifting, posture, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Sugarland, Texas Medical Center

Proper Lifting, Posture and Low Back Pain review by KBNI Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Sugarland, Memorial City

Patients with low back pain worldwide can, following their injuries, attest to the importance of lifting correctly and using good posture of the body and of the spine. Improper lifting technique typically results in three different types of injury to the lumbar spine: 1) muscle injury, which can tear muscle tissue and affect mobility, 2) spinal disc injury, in which the shock-absorbing capability of the disc between our vertebrae is compromised, and 3) joint injury, in which repetitive load-bearing stress can wear out the pliable cartilage which covers the end of each spinal joint.  Keeping the spine and body in a proper posture will decrease strain on the muscles, joints and discs of the spine.  This will help to decrease the incidence or prevent low back pain.

spine, low back pain, proper lifting, posture,  Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Sugarland, Texas Medical Center

spine, low back pain, proper lifting, posture, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Sugarland, Texas Medical Center

The key to avoiding spinal injuries while lifting is proper lifting technique and posture. First, be certain to keep the chest forward while bending at the hips, rather than at the lumbar spine. Bending over at the lumbar spine and lifting will dramatically increase intraspinal pressure, which increases incidence of muscle tears and herniated (ruptured) spinal discs. Bending at the hips, on the other hand, keeps the weight close to the body’s center of gravity and does not raise intraspinal pressure to nearly the same levels. Secondly, torsional movement (twisting) while lifting even small objects can produce a serious spinal injury relatively quickly. For larger objects that are too wide to grasp fully and keep close to the body, obtain the help of another person to minimize risk. Always keeping in mind proper posture is important.

After lifting and moving all of the requisite objects, low back pain may occur as a result of muscle fatigue. Be certain to give your back adequate time, rest, and healthy fuel to recover. If low back pain levels in or around the spinal column have not subsided within three days, medical consultation is advised. Physicians will typically conduct a series of physical tests designed to determine a patient’s range of motion. If mobility is compromised or if the patient’s range of motion is otherwise reduced, these tests will help lower the number of causes for the specific variety of spinal injury in question. Physicians may also require imaging tests (X-Rays, CT scans, and magnetic resonance imaging) to confirm their diagnosis, and to prescribe an accurate, effective course of treatment.

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spine, low back pain, proper lifting, posture, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Sugarland, Texas Medical Center, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

Chiropractors and physical therapists can help patients with education on the proper techniques for lifting and exercising, to prevent or treat low back pain.  Both chiropractors and physical therapists are experts in posture and biomechanics of the body, and injury prevention.  Chiropractors and physical therapists are experts in not only rehabilitating and strengthening the spine after an injury, but also in using good posture and biomechanics to prevent an injury to the spine.

Physician experts at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX have significant experience treating patients who have suffered an injury to the spine, and also in advising on the proper biomechanics and posture of the spine and body to prevent injuries to the spine and low back pain or neck pain.  They offer a wide range of treatment options for treating spine injury, and neck and low back pain.

The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX takes care of patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center  (TMC) and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.

Patients suffering from neck pain or back pain, or who have been told they may require a spine surgery, can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

…….  Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to schedule an appointment online

……. KBNI VIDEO on Back and Neck Pain Treatment : Don’t Live in Fear and Pain

Keywords: spine, low back pain, proper lifting, posture, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Sugarland, Texas Medical Center, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

 

spine, low back pain, proper lifting, posture,  Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Sugarland, Texas Medical Center, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

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Recover from Spinal Fusion discussion by KBNI Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Sugarland, Galveston, Texas Medical Center

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spinal fusion, recover, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy

spinal fusion, recover, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy

Spinal fusion is a back or neck surgery in which vertebrae within the spinal column are fused together to eliminate movement at points of articulation (joints) between them. This can lower spinal mobility overall, but often spinal fusion can have a net positive effect for a patient due to decreased pain levels and increased spinal stability. When a spinal fusion is performed in the cervical spine (neck), it is known as a cervical fusion.  When the spinal fusion is performed in the lumbar spine (low back), it is called a lumbar fusion.  It can take some time to recover after this type of surgery.

To recover from a spinal fusion can be difficult based on the invasiveness of the surgery itself and the length of the post-operative care period. To recover, patients may need to make significant lifestyle changes in order to aid recovery and ensure that a stable fusion takes place as the bones of the spinal column grow back together. Eliminating smoking entirely is absolutely essential. Cigarettes contain elevated levels of nicotine, which is a chemical shown to be highly toxic to bone growth. Nicotine kills the body’s osteoblasts (bone-growing cells), while leaving our bone-eating cells (osteoclasts) alive. Spinal fusion patients who smoke during post-operative recovery are much less likely to maintain a stable spinal column, and may restrict bone growth while extending their less successful recovery by several months. If a patient wants a stable spinal fusion that minimizes the possibility of subsequent corrective surgeries, eliminating smoking is possibly the single greatest factor that aids recovery.

spinal fusion, recover, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy

spinal fusion, recover, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy

To recover, patients must also be certain to follow guidelines regarding physical therapy, exercise, and motion during their post-operative care period. Core strengthening exercises can be guided by a chiropractor or physical therapy. Physical therapy or chiropractic guidance and education can also help to teach about how to prevent future spine injuries.  Spinal fusion is one of the more intensive varieties of back surgery, and physicians must document the recovery process accurately to ensure that the patient’s spinal column is stable enough for everyday motion. This requires subsequent visits for imaging tests (typically X-rays, in the case of spinal fusion) to monitor bone growth. There may be strict guidelines for the amount a patient can lift or the length of time in which the patient may stand, sit, or walk during the course of their daily routines.  The amount of time needed to recover may vary widely depending on how old the patient is (younger patients generally re-grow bone more quickly than older patients) as well as the physical requirements of their occupation.

spinal fusion, recover, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

spinal fusion, recover, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

In some cases, the physician who performed the spinal fusion may have the patient wear an external brace to help recover.  This will help support the body, and reduce movement of the fused area of the spine, while new bone is attempting to grow, and accomplish the spinal fusion.

Some patients may wear an external bone growth stimulator, if prescribed by their doctor.  The bone growth stimulator provides an electric current around the body, which stimulates bone growth.

Physician experts at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX have significant experience at taking care of patients and helping them to recover after undergoing spinal fusion.  Many times, surgery can be avoided, but when necessary, the neurosurgeons at the KBNI have the most current techniques in minimally invasive spine surgery available when appropriate.

The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX takes care of patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center  (TMC) and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.

REFERENCE SITES

www.SpinePain.com

www.NeckPain.com

www.SurgerySpine.com


Patients suffering from a cervical stenosis or lumbar stenosis, or who have been told they may require a lumbar laminectomy or  cervical laminectomy, can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

…….  Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to schedule an appointment online

……. KBNI VIDEO on Back and Neck Pain Treatment : Don’t Live in Fear and Pain

Keywords: spinal fusion, recover, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

 

spinal fusion, recover, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

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Lumbar Stenosis, Cervical Stenosis, Arthritis, Spinal Stenosis and Effects of Aging on Spine discussion KBNI Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Sugarland, Beaumont, Texas Medical Center TMC

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lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, spinal stenosis, arthritis, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring

lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, spinal stenosis, arthritis, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring

As the body and spine age, degenerative changes of arthritis and spinal stenosis can affect the spine.  When this occurs in the cervical spine (neck) , it is known as cervical stenosis, and when it occurs in the lumbar spine (low back) , it is called lumbar stenosis.  Aging typically has an impact on every aspect of daily life, and movement of the spine is no exception. The spine is involved in almost every kind of routine movement: twisting, standing, sitting, walking, and running included. Aging can lower mobility, endurance, strength, and balance, but certain exercises and lifestyle choices help to prolong (and even counteract) some effects of aging, particularly in the case of the spine. The network of muscles, ligaments, and tendons in the torso begins to lose mass as we grow older (as do all muscles in the body), and it becomes more difficult to build muscle mass due to our cells not reproducing as vigorously as they do while we are young. Water loss in tendons (which attach muscles to bones) also makes these tendons stiffer and less capable of managing load-bearing stress. A regimen of core strengthening exercises can prolong torso strength, as well as assist in managing the body’s weight distribution. Regular core strengthening will also help reduce wear on the spinal disks (shock-absorbing pads between our vertebrae) by reducing stress placed upon the spinal column during movement.

lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, spinal stenosis, arthritis, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring

lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, spinal stenosis, arthritis, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring

The lumbar spine anatomy and the cervical spine anatomy consist of vertebral segments, which are held together by ligaments, which cross over the disc spaces, and over the facet joints (which separate one vertebral level from the next).  There is ligament in front of the vertebral body known as the anterior  longitudinal ligament.  The ligament behind the vertebral body is called the posterior longitudinal ligament.  The ligaments around the facet joints are the capsular ligaments.  The ligament between the spinous processes is the interspinous ligament, and the ligament between the transverse process is the inter transverse ligament.  Of particular importance for the aging spine is the ligamentum flavum, which is a ligament which is found on the inside of the spinal canal, just under the lamina (which is the back roof of the spinal canal).  As the spine ages, this ligament can become thickened, and compress upon the nerves of the spinal canal, a condition known as spinal stenosis (cervical stenosis, lumbar stenosis) .  When this occurs, patients may experience pain in the neck or low back, or arms or legs.  When the spinal stenosis occurs in the neck, it is cervical stenosis. When the spinal stenosis occurs in the low back, it is lumbar stenosis.

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lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, spinal stenosis, arthritis, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring

Arthritis also affects the aging spine.  Arthritis is inflammation of the joints.  The spine has many joints, and these can become inflamed, resulting in pain and stiffness.  There are two major typed of arthritis, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.  Osteoarthritis is a result of normal aging or wear and tear upon the spine.  Rheumatoid arthritis is a result of an autoimmune disorder.  Generally, the goal of arthritis treatment is to improve quality and function of live.  When the spine undergoes arthritis, bone spurs can grow inside of the spine and outside of the spine. The facet joints can become thickened and overgrown, and the arthritis can result in bone overgrowth and compression upon nerve roots.  The nerve compression from arthritis can affect the spinal nerves in the central canal (where all of the nerves of the spine pass as they traverse the distance from the brain to the rest of the body) and the arthritis can affect the nerves as they leave the spinal canal through the neural foramen, which are openings in the side of the spinal canal located just next to the facet joints.

Our spinal disks, along with our spinal joints, help our spine articulate, but they also gradually wear down and undergo disc degeneration. They can become thinner, causing a loss in height, as well as a rupture (herniated disc )as a result of regular load-bearing stress, sudden impact trauma (such as a fall), or due to increased body mass. Proper hydration, healthy weight management, a varied and nutritious healthy diet, nutritional supplements, and regular rest will all help prolong the effects of aging on the spinal disks, in addition to maintaining bone density at near-optimal levels. High bone density means less incidence of osteoporosis (low bone density), and a much lower probability of bone density-related spinal fractures (osteoporotic compression fractures). Vertebral compression fractures can press upon the nerves of the spine.   Smoking can also have an adverse effect on overall spine health.

lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, spinal stenosis, arthritis, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, spinal stenosis, arthritis, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

Our heart muscle gradually loses efficiency, meaning that on a year-by-year average, we are less capable of pumping blood in a given amount of time. This means we get tired more quickly and our muscles take longer to recover from stress. For the spine, this means that the support network of bones, ligaments, and muscles around the spine receive less and less nutrition, especially during periods of load-bearing stress. Regular cardiovascular exercise, proper hydration, and a healthy diet as well as weight management will help maintain heart muscle as we age.

In summary, the aging process can take a severe toll upon the spine.  Arthritis in the spine can develop, and along with this, the ligaments can become firm and thickened, resulting in spinal stenosis, lumbar stenosis and cervical stenosis.  Proper physical activity, proper nutrition, core strengthening exercises, sciatica exercises, and stretching can help to slow down and even reverse the aging process, as it relates to the spine.

Spine experts at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX have expertise at taking care of patients with aging symptoms of the spine, in particular arthritis, and spinal stenosis including lumbar stenosis and cervical stenosis.  In the majority of cases, patients may undergo a treatment course and improve without the need of an operation.  When surgery is necessary, Neurosurgeons at the KBNI utilize the most advanced techniques in minimally invasive spine surgery when it is appropriate.

The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX takes care of patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center  (TMC) and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.

REFERENCE SITES

www.SpinePain.com


Patients suffering from a cervical stenosis or lumbar stenosis, or who have been told they may require a lumbar laminectomy or  cervical laminectomy, can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

…….  Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to schedule an appointment online

……. KBNI VIDEO on Back and Neck Pain Treatment : Don’t Live in Fear and Pain

Keywords: lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, spinal stenosis, arthritis, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

 

lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, spinal stenosis, arthritis, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

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Laminectomy, Lumbar Laminectomy, Cervical Laminectomy for Lumbar Stenosis, Cervical Stenosis in Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Sugarland, Beaumont, Texas Medical Center TMC

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laminectomy, lumbar laminectomy, cervical laminectomy, lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, Houston, West Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Spring

laminectomy, lumbar laminectomy, cervical laminectomy, lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, Houston, West Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Spring

A laminectomy is a spinal procedure designed to lower pressure within the spinal canal (spinal stenosis). When it is performed in the low back region for lumbar stenosis, it is known as a lumbar laminectomy, and when in the neck region for cervical stenosis, it is a cervical laminectomy.  During a lumbar laminectomy or cervical laminectomy, the back region of the vertebra, called the lamina, is removed to expand the spinal canal and relieve pressure on the spinal cord (cervical stenosis in the cervical spine), or the nerve roots ( lumbar stenosis in the lumbar spine). Spinal discs (the shock-absorbing pads in between the vertebrae) may rupture or otherwise become displaced. This can raise pressure within the spinal canal or even compress the spinal cord, causing extreme pain and possibly a loss of mobility. As the spinal canal houses the spinal nerves that run through the spinal column, any bone growths, spurs, or herniated disks have the potential to compress these spinal nerves or spinal cord, depending on the level of the spine where the compression occurs. Thickened ligament in the spine may also compress the nerves in the lumbar spine, or the spinal cord in the cervical spine, because the spinal cord travels through the cervical spine, but ends at the top of the lumbar spine, below which only the spinal nerves run within the lumbar spine.  The ligament which often thickens with aging, is known as the ligamentum flavum.  Depending upon where the source of compression of the spinal canal occurs, the surgeon can approach the spine from the front or the back.  When the decompression is from the back, to remove the lamina of the spine, the procedure is known as a laminectomy.

laminectomy, lumbar laminectomy, cervical laminectomy, lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, Houston, West Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Spring

laminectomy, lumbar laminectomy, cervical laminectomy, lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, Houston, West Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Spring

Most commonly, a laminectomy is performed on patients who suffer from spinal stenosis, a condition in which the spinal canal at certain points is narrower than normal. Symptoms vary widely, with some patients reporting extreme pain and a loss of mobility from compressed spinal nerves or spinal cord.  In a much less common situation, bladder problems can occur from pressure placed on spinal nerves (lumbar stenosis) in the lumbar spine on the cauda equina nerves traveling to internal organs. Patients with cervical stenosis may experience neck pain, or pain in the upper extremities, or in more severe cases, may experience partial or complete paralysis.  When patients with cervical stenosis suffer an injury, they may experience trauma to the cervical spinal cord, resulting in a spinal cord injury.  This could result in paralysis below the level of injury of the spinal cord, or another type of cord injury in which the arms are weak, but the legs are strong (known as central cord syndrome).  Other patients’ quality of life may be relatively unchanged, although if sufficient pressure is placed on the cervical spinal cord, a posterior cervical laminectomy may be recommended to reduce the chances of further trauma.

laminectomy, lumbar laminectomy, cervical laminectomy, lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, Houston, West Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Spring

laminectomy, lumbar laminectomy, cervical laminectomy, lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, Houston, West Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Memorial City, Spring

Depending on the extent of the pressure placed on the spinal canal, the surgeon may remove parts of the lamina on both sides of the spinal column, in addition to any fragments of bone or disk that are causing the obstruction. Spinal fusion, a procedure in which vertebrae are fused together to ensure stability, may be necessary depending on the total bone loss sustained during the laminectomy, and any foreseen instability of the spine resulting from extensive bone removal. At times, the degeneration of the spine and overgrowth of bone spurs is so severe, that in order to fully decompress the spinal cord in the neck (cervical stenosis) with a cervical laminectomy, or the spinal nerves in the lumbar spine (lumbar stenosis) with a lumbar laminectomy, part or all of the facet joints (which connect the vertebral body above with the one below) may need to be removed.  When this occurs, the spine may become unstable at that segment, and a spinal fusion at that segment may be considered.

laminectomy, lumbar laminectomy, cervical laminectomy, lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, Houston

laminectomy, lumbar laminectomy, cervical laminectomy, lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, Houston

Patients who are experiencing numbness or pain down one or both legs are advised to seek medical attention. Although there are several different possible causes for the compression of spinal nerves, symptoms may not fully indicate the seriousness of the condition. Continued compression can eventually cause permanent loss of sensation, as well as paralysis of the extremities. Paralysis of the legs, from lumbar stenosis, is very uncommon, but in rare situations, can occur, particularly is the lumbar stenosis is sudden and severe in onset, such as a severe and large herniated disc, or a spine injury fracture.  Patients who experience numbness or pain down one or both arms are also advised to seek medical attention.  If a patient feels a “electric shock” traveling down the spine, known as  a Lhernitte sign, the patient may be suffering from spinal cord compression in the neck (cervical spine).  In this situation, the patient should definitely make an urgent appointment to see a spine surgeon.  Following a cervical laminectomy or lumbar laminectomy, a physical therapy regimen to maintain mobility and strengthen the core will give patients the best chance at restoring stability to their spinal columns.  Core strengthening can be accomplished with physical therapy or by chiropractic treatment with a chiropractor.

Expert neurosurgeons at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston, TX, have significant experience in treating cervical stenosis and lumbar stenosis.  At times, they are able to treat patients and improve their symptoms without the need for surgery.  When the cervical stenosis or lumbar stenosis is moderate or severe, or the symptoms the patient experiences are unrelenting, a lumbar laminectomy or cervical laminectomy may be performed.  The KBNI neurosurgeons utilize minimally invasive spine surgery techniques when appropriate.

The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX takes care of patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center  (TMC) and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.

Patients suffering from a cervical stenosis or lumbar stenosis, or who have been told they may require a lumbar laminectomy or  cervical laminectomy, can

contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

…….  Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to schedule an appointment online

……. KBNI VIDEO on Back and Neck Pain Treatment : Don’t Live in Fear and Pain

Keywords: laminectomy, lumbar laminectomy, cervical laminectomy, lumbar stenosis, cervical stenosis, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

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Spine Anatomy, Lumbar Spine, Cervical Spine, Thoracic Spine discussion KBNI Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Sugarland, Texas Medical Center TMC

 

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spine, lumbar spine, cervical spine, thoracic spine, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring

spine, lumbar spine, cervical spine, thoracic spine, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring

The anatomy of the spine is varied and complex, with strong bones working in tandem with discs (shock-absorbing pads between the vertebrae), as well as flexible ligaments, tendons, and muscles. The lumbar spine, cervical spine and thoracic spine each have their own very unique structure, allowing for different stresses and strains to be supported, and allowing for very different ranges of motion.  A large collection of very sensitive nerves also dwells in the spinal column, transferring sensory information and motor control from the central nervous system to other parts of the body. There are eight different nerves associated with the cervical spine, twelve with the thoracic spine, and five with the lumbar spine.  The nerves from the cervical spine generally supply movement and sensation to the arms.  The nerves from the thoracic spine are mainly sensory, and supply sensation to the chest and back.  The nerves from the lumbar spine mainly supply motor and sensory function to the legs.

As described above, when talking about the spine, it is generally  divided into three primary regions: the lumbar spine (lower back), thoracic spine (middle back), and cervical spine (neck), while the base of the spine sits on a triangular bone called the sacrum. Each vertebra in the spine also has several parts. For example, vertebrae are divided into the body, which supports the weight of the spinal column, as well as the lamina, which covers the opening that would otherwise allow direct access to the spinal cord. Facet joints (one pair facing upward and one facing downward) link each vertebra in the spinal column and provide articulation points for movement. Repetitive load-bearing stress, poor weight management, and physical trauma can degrade the cartilage on the facet joints to the point where vertebrae are at risk for compressing nearby spinal nerves.

spine, lumbar spine, cervical spine, thoracic spine, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

spine, lumbar spine, cervical spine, thoracic spine, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

At times, generally from trauma or degenerative changes (wear and tear on the body), intervertebral discs located between the vertebral bodies, may herniated, and may push against the nerves leaving the cervical spine, lumbar spine, or thoracic spine.  Disc herniations causing symptoms are much more frequent in the cervical spine and lumbar spine than they are in the thoracic spine.  This is because the cervical and lumbar spine are subject to much movement, while the thoracic spine is held in a more rigid position as it is supported by the rib cage.  A herniated disc in the lumbar spine may cause pain in the leg, and weakness of the leg.  A herniated disc in the cervical spine may cause pain in the arm, or weakness of the arm.  When a herniated disc in the cervical spine compresses the cervical spinal cord, it may result in a spinal cord injury and possibly partial or complete paralysis, from the level of the spinal cord compression and below.  For example, if there is severe pressure on the spinal cord at the level of C5/6, a patient may have good strength in the deltoid muscles at the shoulders, but be otherwise paralyzed in the more distal arms and legs.  A herniated disc in the thoracic spine may cause pain around the chest and rib cage, but when pressing on the thoracic spinal cord, may also cause partial or complete paralysis from the level of the compression and down.

Spinal nerves are particularly susceptible to injury, given that they do not regenerate once they have endured sufficient physical trauma. This is why conditions that threaten the integrity of the spinal cord—such as spinal tumors, bone spurs, and spinal fractures—must be diagnosed and treated as soon as possible. Physicians often require several imaging exams, such as CT scans, X-rays, and magnetic resonance imaging, to determine whether there are any structural problems within the spinal column that may compromise the spinal cord.

cervical spine, spine,  Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

cervical spine, spine, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

From an anatomical perspective, many patients who suffer from low back pain and strains and sprains often simply need to develop their torso through a series of core strengthening low back strengthening exercises. Increased blood flow will help aid the network of ligaments, tendons, and muscles that assist the spinal column of the lumbar spine in distributing the body’s weight. Back pain, when understood and treated, can be improved without surgery.  As such, core strengthening is often a hallmark of physical therapy regimens for patients who have undergone spinal procedures.  The same can be said for neck pain.  Strengthening of the neck and paraspinal muscles adjacent to the cervical spine may help with neck pain.  Strengthening of the muscles surrounding the thoracic spine may also help with mid back thoracic pain.

Spine experts at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX treat disorders of the cervical spine, thoracic spine and lumbar spine.  Many patients are seen after experiencing years of spine pain, or after having suffered a car or truck accident.  Regardless of the cause or duration of pain, physicians at the KBNI obtain the appropriate imaging studies and nerve studies to look for the source of the pain.  After the source of pain is localized, treatment can begin to attempt to treat and improve the pain.  Neurosurgeons at the KBNI have found that the majority of patients suffering from pain do not need an operation on the spine, but when surgery is needed, they have the ability to perform the spine surgery using the latest techniques in minimally invasive spine surgery when appropriate.

lumbar spine, spine,  Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

lumbar spine, spine, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX takes care of patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center  (TMC) and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.

Patients suffering from a herniated disc can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at

…….  281-713-6296

…….  Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to schedule an appointment online

……. KBNI VIDEO on Back and Neck Pain Treatment : Don’t Live in Fear and Pain

Keywords: spine, lumbar spine, cervical spine, thoracic spine, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

thoracic spine, spine,  Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin

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SPINE PAIN, SCIATICA and LASER TREATMENT review by KBNI Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Sugarland, Kingwood, Beaumont, Memorial City, TMC (Texas Medical Center)

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spine, pain, sciatica, laser, Houston, katy, woodlands, sugarland, kingwood, Beaumont, Memorial City, TMC (Texas Medical Center)

spine, pain, sciatica, laser, Houston, katy, woodlands, sugarland, kingwood, Beaumont, Memorial City, TMC (Texas Medical Center)

There is much discussion about the use of the laser for treatment of pain in the spine, or for treatment of pain radiating down the leg, known as sciatica.  In order to understand more about this, it is necessary to have a better understanding of what is causing the pain, and what the laser actually does.

The laser is a device which delivers a high amount of focused energy into a small spot.  The word LASER stands for “light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation.”  When used in the operating room, the laser allows the surgeon the ability to cut or vaporize tissue.

Pain in the lower back, and pain traveling down the lower extremities, is a very common problem facing society.  The daily impact which the spine encounters as it keeps us erect and wrlking, constantly battling the forces of gravity, do take their toll upon the spine.

Next, let’s discuss what actually causes pain in the spine, or radiating pain in the lower extremity, known as sciatica.  Pain in the spine can come from muscle or ligament strain and sprain, from pressure on nerves, from intervertebral disc injury or tears, or from injury to the facet joints (located between the different vertebral body levels).  Pain in the lower extremities (sciatica) may result from pressure on the nerves, from a herniated disc or from arthritis.  In order to relieve the pain, the pressure must be removed from the nerve.  This can be achieved by removing the portion of the disc which is pressing on the nerve, or drilling away or otherwise removing the bone spur pushing on the nerve.   In the event of removing the disc bulge, this can be done by cutting the disc, or pulling the fragment out, or burning or vaporizing this fragment with a laser.

laser treatment for spine pain sciatica Houston

laser treatment for spine pain sciatica Houston

When we are dealing with pain in the spine (low back pain), the pain can be coming from several sources, as indicated above.  When the pain is coming from the facet joint, a procedure can be done to disable the sensory nerves going to the facet joint.  This can be done by heating the nerves, either by a heated probe known as a rhizotomy, or by the use of a laser.  The nerves which are targeted are known as the medial branches of the spinal nerves which leave the spine.

To summarize, treating back pain or spine pain requires understanding what the source of the pain is.  Once this is determined, treatment of the problem can begin.  The laser functions as a focused source of heat which can destroy or vaporize tissue.  Other methods such as cutting or coagulating can provide a similar result.  The laser serves among other tools in the armamentarium of a spine surgeon or pain specialist, but in itself, is still merely a tool.  The critical role in treating pain of the spine or sciatica is diagnosing what is causing the pain.  The source of the pain can be chronic, or sudden (such as whiplash from a motor vehicle injury).

Experts at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston focus on discovering what the source and cause of the pain is.  They believe that it is only after the cause has been located, that the actual treatment can truly begin.  Simply treating the symptom of pain, without trying to find the cause, is not a good long term solution.

The KBNI, in Houston, TX  treats patients from Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Sugarland, Kingwood, Beaumont, Memorial City, and TMC (Texas Medical Center).  Patients who are suffering from low back pain, neck pain, and sciatica are welcome to call for an appointment.

They can also visit the website www.spinehealth.com and schedule online.

No testing or imaging studies are needed to make an appointment.  Experts at the KBNI will arrange for appropriate studies.

Tags:  spine, pain, sciatica, laser, Houston, katy, woodlands, sugarland, kingwood, Beaumont, Memorial City, TMC (Texas Medical Center)

 

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Spinal Fusion including Lumbar Fusion and Cervical Fusion for Pain and Nerve Compression in Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Sugarland, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Humble, Kingwood, Conroe and Beaumont

 

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spinal fusion, lumbar fusion, cervical fusion, nerve compression, pain, Houston, katy, woodlands, sugarland, memorial city, texas medical center, TMC, humble, kingwood, Conroe, beaumont

spinal fusion, lumbar fusion, cervical fusion, nerve compression, pain, Houston, katy, woodlands, sugarland, memorial city, texas medical center, TMC, humble, kingwood, Conroe, beaumont

Bone fusion (also called arthrodesis) (when performed in the low back  spine is called lumbar fusion, when performed in the neck is called cervical fusion) is the procedure by which bones are joined at specific joints, most often to alleviate pain. The new fused bones are allowed to grow together. This lowers pain levels because at common bone fusion sites (lumbar or lower spine, wrists, ankles, or thumbs, neck or cervical spine) there are often nerves nearby that are responsible for  sensation, as well as recognition of joint position and movement. Bones on either side of the deteriorating joint can compress these nerves and cause extreme pain. Fusing these bones significantly lowers the incidence of nerve irritation, and when bone spurs are removed, can reduce nerve compression.

Causes for a patient desiring bone fusion surgery, or spinal fusion surgery can include rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis, as well as severe back pain due to tumors or herniated (slipped) discs. Like other joints in the body, the discs (shock-absorbing pads) between our spinal vertebrae, can wear out. Nerve compression in the spine occurs much more frequently when these spinal discs have been thinned or ruptured by age and activity. The arthritis, as well as the chronic herniated discs, can compress nerves passing next to them.  As in other regions of the body, bone fusion is a possible solution for reducing pain, but it will eliminate mobility at that particular joint.

Neurosurgeons at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute, in Houston, have a significant experience with utilizing spinal fusion (lumbar fusion, cervical fusion) to treat neck pain and low back pain in patients.  They have offices located in Houston and surrounding areas of Katy, Woodlands, Sugarland, Memorial City, Texas  Medical Center (TMC), Humble, Kingwood, Conroe, and Beaumont.

Bone fusion is somewhat unique in that in many cases, it seeks to mimic the body’s natural healing response. In one version, bone is taken from another region in the body and inserted between the two or more bones that are being fused together. This “foreign” bone stimulates bone growth during post-operative care, as it is placed under pressure and adjacent to other bone, which has been prepared to grow into the new bone graft.  Other versions of bone fusion or spinal fusion may include implantation of wires, metal plates, screws, and other devices to accurately position the new joint, and keep it immobile, while the new bone is trying to grow into the bone graft. Adequate rest and physical therapy during post-operative care are absolutely essential to ensure that a proper bone fusion takes place. If the new joint is displaced by excessive movement, subsequent corrective surgeries may be necessary to re-set the bone.

spinal fusion, lumbar fusion, cervical fusion, nerve compression, pain, Houston, katy, woodlands, sugarland, memorial city, texas medical center, TMC, humble, kingwood, Conroe, beaumont

spinal fusion, lumbar fusion, cervical fusion, nerve compression, pain, Houston, katy, woodlands, sugarland, memorial city, texas medical center, TMC, humble, kingwood, Conroe, beaumont

The technique of lumbar fusion or cervical fusion  (spinal fusion) can be performed in several ways.  The general principle is to have bone grow across the currently mobile disc space.  A number of techniques are possible.  One approach is to try to achieve this fusion on the sides of the spine, between what are known as transverse processes, which project outward from the vertebral bodies.  In doing so, the surgeon exposes these transverse processes during the operation, and removes the outer coating of the bone, known as the cortex, thus exposing the inner cancellous bone, which is the honeycomb type of bone seen when one breaks open a chicken bone.  With the outer hard cortex removed, the inner cancellous bone will attempt to grow into the bone graft which it is in contact with.  This bone graft can be placed on the side of the spine, which is known as a lumbar posterolateral fusion.  It can also be placed between the vertebral bodies, which is known as an interbody fusion.  When this type of lumbar fusion is performed, it is called a lumbar intervertebral body fusion.  When this type of cervical fusion is performed, it is called a an anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF).  In the cervical spine, this type of fusion is generally performed through an anterior approach, which means going in through the front of the neck.  When this interbody fusion is performed in the lumbar spine, it can be performed from the back of the spine (known as a PLIF (posterior lumbar interbody fusion) or a TLIF (transverse lumber interbody fusion), the front of the spine (known as an ALIF (anterior lumbar interbody fusion).  It can also be performed from the side of the spine, known as an XLIF (extreme lateral interbody fusion) or a DLIF (direct lateral interbody fusion) (these different names utilized basically the same lateral approach, but were given different names by two different manufacturers of the spinal hardware equipment (Nuvasive and Medtronic).  It can also be performed through an approach going straight up the spine, through an incision made next to the tail bone, known as an AXIALIF (axial lumbar interbody fusion), the instruments of which are manufactured by TranS1.

There are also a number of different grafts which can be used for promoting the bone growth in a spinal fusion.  Cadaver bone can be used, which is harvested from cadavers.  This is known as allograft.  Bone can be taken from the patient undergoing surgery, either from a different site or from the same site.  This is known as autograft.  Substances known as bone morphogenic protein (BMP) ( Medtronic manufactures Infuse) can be used locally to promote bone growth.  Stem cells, taken from the patient’s own blood which has been spun down in a centrifuge, can be placed over the graft to help promote bone growth.

Candidates for bone fusion / spinal fusion also need to be aware of the effects of smoking on the procedure. Osteoblasts (bone-growing cells) are needed in droves to ensure a speedy recovery. One of the addictive chemicals in cigarettes, nicotine, is toxic to osteoblasts and can substantially lengthen the time necessary for a complete bone fusion, or even make it impossible to achieve. Smokers are advised to abstain before and after the procedure.

Patients suffering pain in the neck, low back, or other portions of the spine, can call the Kraus Back and Neck Institute in Houston, TX.  They will be evaluated and appropriate tests will be ordered.  No imaging studies are required for patients to be seen.

http://www.spinepain.com/anterior-cervical-discectomy-with-fusion-kraus-back-neck-institute.html

http://www.neurosurgery.com

http://www.neurosurgeryhouston.com/services/spine-conditions

spinal fusion, cervical fusion, lumbar fusion for nerve compression and pain in Houston

spinal fusion, cervical fusion, lumbar fusion for nerve compression and pain in Houston

Key Words: spinal fusion, lumbar fusion, cervical fusion, nerve compression, pain, Houston, katy, woodlands, sugarland, memorial city, texas medical center, TMC, humble, kingwood, Conroe, beaumont

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Spinal Surgery : Reality and Myths

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     Spinal Surgery: Reality and Myths

 

 

 

Spinal surgery can be one of the most costly, physically taxing methods of treatment on the healthcare market today. Fortunately, many patients overestimate the need for such serious measures. Many types of neck and back pain can be addressed and resolved with other methods of treatment, such as physical therapy, pain medication, exercise, and healthy dieting. These are typically the courses of action prescribed by physicians as well, given that spinal surgery may have unintended side effects on the patient’s daily life.
Some patients, however, will find that their pain and / or structural problems are not resolved by these treatment plans. With advancements in modern medical technology, there are now dozens of different spinal surgical procedures available to correct many types of structural problems. Disk degeneration, spinal tumors, bone spurs, spinal stenosis—all of these disorders and others may necessitate spinal surgery should they have a substantial negative impact on a patient’s quality of life.
For example, patients who have advanced degeneration of the spinal disks

spine surgery

spine surgery

(the shock-absorbing pads between our vertebrae that break down naturally over time) may be candidates for artificial disk implantation. During this procedure, an artificial disk mimicking the body’s natural shock absorber is implanted in the spine. Spinal fusion, a procedure that fuses vertebrae thus eliminating the possibility of further damaging the disks between them, may also be an available option. Patients are advised to seek thorough medical consultation when considering spinal surgery. Several imaging techniques, such as CT scans, X-rays, and magnetic resonance imaging, may be prescribed to evaluate courses of action. Specialists may be referred to address problems that have not been corrected through physical rehabilitation.
Post-operative care is crucial for patients who have undergone spinal surgery. Many surgical procedures require long recovery times with periods of mandatory rest and physical rehabilitation. Several subsequent post-operative visits to primary care physicians and specialists are necessary to monitor the patient’s recovery.

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Whiplash review by KBNI Houston, Katy, Sugarland, Spring, Woodlands, Baytown, Beaumont, Port Arthur, Tomball

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       Whiplash / Houston

 

 

Each year more than two million Americans experience a whiplash injury (a.k.a. whiplash-associated disorder) to their neck. Numerous studies have shown that the most common cause of whiplash is a 6 to 12 mph rear-end automobile collision where the individual has a sudden, hyper-extension (backward movement) and flexion (forward movement) of the neck. The violent, unexpected motion forces the neuromuscular structure of the cervical region to exceed its normal movement parameters. Collisions at higher speeds have a commensurately higher incidence of severe damage to the cervical spine region.

Whiplash-associated disorder can also be caused by a front-end or side-impact automobile collision, contact sport-related accident, e.g., being struck from behind, diving/swimming pool accident, amusement park ride, or physical abuse (e.g., shaken baby syndrome). The pain the individual feels can be mild to severe and acute (short term) or chronic (long term). It is generally agreed that as many as 40% of patients with acute, whiplash-associated neck pain will develop chronic neck pain.

Soft Tissue Injury

In the majority of cases, the whiplash injury damages the soft tissue of the neck resulting in a sprain or strain of the neck muscles or ligaments. In the past, damage to the soft tissues was nearly impossible to visualize. Even with the aid of various advanced imaging technologies (MRI, CT-scan, standard x-ray with contrast, etc.) visualization remains difficult. There are times when patients will experience soft tissue injury, with pain, yet the imaging studies are completely normal. This means that the key factor in soft tissue diagnosis is the knowledge and experience of the spine specialist.

The symptoms of a soft tissue neck injury include neck pain, arm and hand pain, stiffness, back pain, shoulder pain, ringing in the ears, dizziness, neck-related (cervicogenic) headache, paresthesia (burning, tingling or prickling sensation), or injury to the discs, facet joints of the low back or sacroiliac joints. Some people may also experience cognitive deficits such as memory loss and impaired concentration as well as sleep disorders or psychological conditions, e.g., nervousness, depression or irritability. It is important to keep in mind that while the symptoms of a whiplash-associated disorder usually appear within 24 hours, in some cases the symptoms may not manifest themselves until days or even weeks after the accident.

If a soft-tissue injury is confirmed, there are a number of passive treatment alternatives that may be recommended including bed rest, hot and cold compresses, pain relieving medications such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, and muscle relaxants. The decision as to which medication(s) is prescribed will depend on the type and severity of pain being experienced, the individual’s pain tolerance, and their general medical condition. Spine specialists now prefer that the patient pursue their daily activities in as normal a manner as possible. In the past, whiplash patients were advised to wear a cervical collar to limit neck movement. This type of immobilization is no longer considered an effective therapy as prolonged collar wear can cause weakness in the neck muscles.

Most patients with mild to moderate whiplash will have pain relief within a few days to two weeks, with a prognosis of full recovery in 10 to 12 weeks. For those individual’s whose neck pain becomes chronic (more than 12 weeks) or worsens the spine specialist may recommend, in addition to pain medication, some form active intervention including physical medicine, e.g., physical therapy, traction, range of motion exercises, etc. In the rare case of prolonged, debilitating soft-tissue pain the patient may be prescribed anti-inflammatory cortisone injections, opioid analgesics and/or anti-depressants. Surgery is not considered to be a treatment option for a soft-tissue whiplash-associated disorder.

Cervical Spine Injury

The pain symptoms of a cervical spine injury due to whiplash-associated disorder are similar to that of a soft tissue injury. If the spine specialist’s examination and imaging studies reveals damage to the facet joints, intervertebral discs, nerve roots and/or vertebrae of the cervical spine a more aggressive treatment regimen is usually undertaken. This approach may include physical medicine, anti-inflammatory pain medications, injections of cortisone into facet joints, facet joint radiofrequency neurotomy, facet joint laser ablation, therapeutic nerve blocks (steroid plus analgesic), and/or anterior cervical discectomy or laminectomy with fusion.

End Note: Although whiplash injuries occur with ever-greater frequency, the diagnosis of a whiplash-associated disorder is a challenging undertaking. The success of whiplash treatment will be a function of the thoroughness and accuracy of the spine specialist’s diagnosis.

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