Spinal stenosis refers to a narrowing of the spinal canal leading to compression of the spinal nerve roots or the spinal cord. There are two types of stenosis: lumbar and cervical. In both cases, affected individuals experience symptoms relating to the nerves of the spinal cord. Because most nerves travel through the spinal column, symptoms can be wide-ranging and affect the entire body.
One of the most common symptoms of spinal stenosis is a pain in the leg while walking or pseudoclaudication. Upright exercise and prolonged standing can worsen this symptom, which usually progresses over time and eases as soon as the person sits down. This pain often leads to diminished activity. Physical therapy and specific changes in posture may help reduce this symptom.
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