Spinal Cord Compression Symptoms and Treatment
Spinal cord compression occurs when something puts pressure on the spinal cord. Tumors, spinal cord injury, and aging can all cause spinal cord compression. Symptoms of spinal cord compression include problems with bowel or bladder function, loss of sensation in hands and feet, weakness of the arms and legs, coordination problems, pain and numbness in the extremities, neck, back, arms or shoulders. If you have these symptoms, seek medical attention as soon as possible.
If the problem is caused by a tumor, medical intervention is the only solution. If the spinal cord compression is the result of injury, nerve function may be restored as swelling subsides. Symptoms are most commonly experienced in the body below the spinal cord injury levels, the place in which the spine was injured. A low level means the injury is closer to the base of the spine, while a high level indicates an injury closer to the head. Spinal cord injury rehabilitation is used to prevent further problems, restore function and help the injured person to resume his or her life. The rehabilitation team includes physical therapists, occupational therapists, psychologists, rehabilitation nurses and social workers.
Spinal cord compression is sometimes a side effect of aging. Bony protrusions caused by osteoarthritis and worn disks can put pressure on the spinal cord. Osteopathic manipulation can sometimes move the bones into better alignment, relieving pressure and pain. If you have back pain massage by a trained therapist, osteopath or chiropractor can often give you relief.