Spine Instability Treatment In Dallas
Spine instability is characterized by abnormal movement between two or more adjoining vertebrae. This excessive movement can affect the spinal column, facet joints, intervertebral discs, and most importantly the spinal cord or nerves.
Causes of Spine Instability
Comprised of 33 vertebrae, the spinal column supports the entire body. Many conditions can cause instability of this complex structure.
Spinal instability most commonly results from age-related wear and tear that leads to disc and facet joint deterioration. Congenital causes of spine instability include scoliosis, spondylolisthesis, and anomalies in the lumbosacral transition. Acquired spine instability refers to tumors or infections that impact the spinal vertebra. It may also originate from an injury or trauma that damages integral structures.
Recognizing Spine Instability Symptoms
Patients with spine instability can experience a number of symptoms that worsen when performing certain activities, such as bending, twisting, or lifting heavy items. In some cases, discomfort occurs after prolonged periods of lying down or standing.
Abnormal movement between spinal vertebrae can cause inflammation and compression of the spinal cord or nerve roots, resulting in the following symptoms:
- Painful muscle spasms
- Sciatica – a burning sensation that extends down the buttock and thigh
- Pain, weakness, or tingling in the legs or arms
- Decreased mobility
- Extreme stiffness
- Weakened postural control
These symptoms may be mild at first or indicative of a different spine condition underscoring the need for a professional diagnosis.
Diagnosing Spine Instability
Diagnosing this condition starts with a complete patient history and physical examination. Patients are asked to describe their subjective experiences and symptoms. X-rays may be taken to observe changes or misalignment in bone structure, and advanced imaging tests such as MRIs and CT scans can pinpoint the cause and severity of spine instability.
To customize a spine instability treatment plan, Dr. David Barnett will evaluate instability in the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spine and determine which structures and systems are affected.
Non-Surgical Treatment Options
Mild spinal instability will often improve with conservative treatment. Dr. Barnett may recommend the following:
- Lifestyle modifications to avoid activities that cause pain and muscle spasms
- Physical therapy to strengthen muscles to help support the spine
- Anti-inflammatory medications
- Pain management techniques
- Bracing and external support devices
- Corticosteroid spinal injections to relieve pain
- Spinal decompression
Surgical Solutions for Spine Stability
Surgical intervention is necessary only if neurologic symptoms develop or conservative treatment fails to resolve pain and other symptoms of instability.
Dr. David Barnett is highly skilled in minimally-invasive spine surgery techniques designed to repair instability and address nerve compression. Patient anatomy, pathology, and symptoms will determine the type of spine instability surgery utilized.
Minimally-invasive spinal fusion procedures include:
- Anterior or posterior segmental Fixation
- Interbody Fusion
- Posterolaterall arthrodesis
Dallas Spine Instability Treatment
Instability of the spine can cause chronic pain, mobility problems and significantly reduce one’s quality of life. A renowned spine specialist in Dallas, Dr. David Barnett never rushes into surgery and offers a broad range of conservative treatments that address underlying causes of spine instability. Call or contact us online to schedule your appointment today.
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From start to finish, Dr. Barnett and his staff were always informative and professional. Dr. Barnett performed my neck surgery and lower back surgery all during a pandemic and everything worked out perfect. Highly recommend Dr. Barnett. Top notch.
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