Treatment for lumbar spinal stenosis is done to relieve pain, numbness, and weakness in the legs and improve your ability to function and your quality of life. Medicine may be used to relieve the pain and inflammation caused by spinal stenosis. Taking medicine in conjunction with other nonsurgical treatment is often enough to relieve pain and allow you to do normal daily activities.
Medicines used to relieve the symptoms of spinal stenosis include:
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as aspirin, naproxen, and ibuprofen, which may relieve pain and reduce inflammation.
- Acetaminophen, which may relieve pain but does not reduce inflammation.
- Opioids, to relieve severe lower back pain that does not respond to other medicines. Opioids are usually used only for short periods of time, to help avoid side effects from the medicine.
- Epidural steroid injections (ESIs), which may be used to reduce inflammation and pain in the legs.
What To Think About
Tell your doctor about any other health problems you have and all the other medicines you take. This will help him or her choose the pain medicine that will work best for you.
Some doctors don't like to give epidural steroid injections (ESIs). The symptom relief does not last long and their long-term effects aren't well understood.