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Lumbar spinal stenosis refers to the narrowing of the spinal canal in the lumbar spine. All of the nerve roots that go on to give motor, sensory, and reflex function to the lower limbs are contained in the spinal canal. As individuals get older some will experience degenerative changes that lead to this canal becoming smaller. As this occurs, it can present in a wide variety of ways. Symptoms can include: difficulty walking long distances, loss of sensation, numbness, muscle weakness, balance issues, decreased reflexes and many others. These all begin slowly and progress over time, so it can be hard to recognize the beginning of this condition. Typically, extension of the lumbar spine will irritate these individuals and so they will often present with a stooped posture, but all cases are different. This condition often progresses as a patient ages and symptoms may increase in severity. This can often affect an individual’s activities of daily living and have a large impact on their quality of life. Surgical options are available but often do not lead to positive results. Because of this, conservative treatment is always the first method of treatment and can be extremely effective. The majority of conservative treatments for this condition involve flexion of the lumbar spine and strengthening abdominal and spinal muscles.

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