Bone Spurs

What are Bone Spurs?

Also known as Osteophyte or, more accurately, Osteochondrophytes

A bone spur is generally explained as a bony bulge or protrusion that forms along the edge of another bone.
These bulges or protrusions will customarily form in the joints of the body. They can be prevalent in ankles, hands, shoulders, knees, hips and even in all regions of the spinal vertebrae. Bone spurs are a very familiar finding among the over-60 population, not to say that younger adults don’t have them also, because younger age sets are also diagnosed with bone spurs. However, these growths occur over a long period of time, therefore, the older you are, the more time they have had to form.

Some Factors that contribute to bone spur growth in the spinal region are:

  • Aging
  • Disc and Joint Degeneration
  • Heredity
  • Injuries, this could be auto accidents, sports-related trauma, or other accidents
  • Poor posture
  • Problems in the spinal structure that a person is born with
  • An additional diagnosis of arthritis, osteoarthritis and/or spinal stenosis

When you have bone spurs in your spine, it is not the spur itself that is causing your symptoms. The pain, numbness, burning or muscle weakness is actually being caused by the effect the spur has on the nerves and tissues around the spur. Your spine consists of many “gel-filled” discs, and their main function is to provide a cushion of sorts, for your day-to-day movements and activities. Each disc and joint also has openings, called foramen. These foramen provide the space (opening) for the nerve and the opening is only large enough for the nerve itself. A bone spur can cause a great deal of difficulties when they grow and interfere with the size of that opening. You can probably imagine how little pressure on the nerve it takes in order to interfere with the nerve’s function.

Patients will frequently ask if bone spurs can go away on their own. Unfortunately, given that they are bony arthritic structures, they will not go away on their own. However, if you are experiencing undesirable symptoms, there are many effective non-invasive treatments you can utilize, as listed below.

  • NDR Method®
  • Electro Medicine
  • Laser Therapy
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications
  • Icing

Many symptoms that come along with chronic conditions can cause an interruption in your daily living and
affect your quality of life. If you think you are suffering with symptoms associated with bone spurs, taking early action to regain your range of motion can be a tremendous help in regaining your quality of life.

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