For many people, spinal stenosis develops after the age of 50, and the condition is expected to become more prevalent as the Baby Boomer generation ages. The condition, which is triggered by abnormal narrowing of the spinal canal, can lead to functional impairment, pain, and a decline in quality of life. According to an estimate cited by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, 2.4 million people in America will experience lumbar spinal stenosis by 2021.

Known for limiting a person’s daily activities, spinal stenosis most frequently occurs in the lumbar and cervical part of the spine, thereby making it painful to walk or stand. The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases explains that common spinal stenosis symptoms include back pain, weakness, foot problems, and pain running down the legs or arms.

An experienced neurosurgeon, Dr. Kim B. Wright leads and treats patients at Laser Precision Spine Surgery in Anchorage, Fairbanks, and Wasilla, Alaska. Kim B. Wright, MD, focuses on evidenced-based medicine and addresses a wide range of spine conditions, such as spinal stenosis.