Spinal Canal Stenosis and Gardening?

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Spinal Canal Stenosis and Gardening? The right posture is important!

Pruning trees, raking leaves, plucking weeds - the gardening season is coming to an end and many are now making their green spaces winter-proof. However, some hobby gardeners lose interest in gardening if they are accompanied by unbearable back pain. Especially people with constrictions in the spinal canal - doctors speak of spinal canal stenosis - in which every movement presses on the nerves and pain spreads to the feet, should pay attention to the correct posture. Dr. Thomas Bierstedt, spinal surgeon and specialist in neurosurgery from the Orthopedic-Neurosurgical Center in Datteln and Recklinghausen. Conservative measures do not bring relief, sometimes relieve pain if there are persistent severe symptoms that get worse despite gardening that is easy on the back.

Sufferers often report an immediate improvement in their symptoms as soon as they lean forward. They expand the space in the spinal cord and reduce the pressure on the nerves in the narrowed spinal canal. For all gardening, the most important rule is: keep your back straight. “For example, if you work with your knees bent, you keep your back in a healthy position and at the same time strengthen your abdominal muscles, which support the spine like a body's corset,” explains Dr. Bierstedt. In addition, the lower back is often exposed when stooped. Cool drafts tighten the back muscles and symptoms of spinal stenosis worsen. Also important: change your posture again and again and take breaks as well as stretching and loosening exercises. On the other hand, if gardeners constantly strive to keep their backs particularly straight, they also cramp. Regularly changing postures represent natural training for the body and thus strengthen the back. "In addition, sporting activity such as cycling or walking serves as an optimal balance for stressed muscles after a day in the garden," adds Dr. Bierstedt.

Those who complain of severe back pain despite back-friendly gardening and who already notice paralysis and sensation disorders suffer from a high degree of narrowing in the spinal canal. In such cases, surgery promises relief, in which surgeons remove disruptive tissue structures and make room for the pinched nerve again. "Depending on the size, it may then be necessary to stabilize the spine," notes Dr. Since this often happens due to stiffening of the affected vertebrae, many patients shy away from the procedure for fear of the associated restrictions on movement. Flexible spine stabilization offers an alternative: Instead of statically screwing the vertebral bodies together, a dynamic implant - the so-called TOPS system - ensures that the patient remains flexible and permanently free of pain in all directions as usual. Because gardening in particular requires full mobility of the spine: gardeners stretch to cut the branches, bend to weed pluck or twist and bow when raking leaves. (pm)

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Video: Lumbar Spinal Stenosis: Diagnosis and Treatment Options


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  2. Fridwolf

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  3. Curtis

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