Skip to content

333 East 38th Street, 6th Floor New York, NY 10016


Spinal nerve compression is a term referring to any condition that places pressure on the spinal cord or nerve roots along the spine. It may lead to pain, weakness or other neuromuscular problems, some of which can be severe. When the spinal canal narrows for any reason, it can cause painful spinal nerve compression. Seeking treatment from a specialist like Dr. Charla Fischer in New York City is advised when symptoms develop.

What is spinal nerve compression?
The spinal cord is full of nerves that relay messages between your brain and body. Surrounding the spinal cord are a series of bones called vertebrae and discs between them, all together making up the spinal column. In addition to nerves being contained within the spinal cord, nerves also go outward through spaces in the vertebrae to send messages throughout the body. Spinal nerve compression occurs when the spinal canal narrows and creates a pinched nerve. This can be a result of various factors such as injury, arthritis, herniated discs, degenerative disc disease, infections, osteoporosis, and more.

What are the symptoms?
Spinal nerve compression symptoms can occur quickly or can take years to become noticeable. The most common symptoms include:

  • Back or neck pain
  • Weakness or numbness in the extremities
  • Pain that radiates to other parts of the body
  • Sciatica which is a burning pain originating in the lower back and spreading down the legs
  • Loss of coordination
  • Limping related to foot weakness
  • Loss of bladder or bowel control in severe cases

A qualified physician like Dr. Fischer can correctly diagnose spinal nerve compression and develop an appropriate treatment plan.

Is surgery required?
Conservative treatment methods are the first line of defense for spinal nerve compression. Pain management and physical therapy are two common initial steps. If symptoms are not controlled, surgery may be advised. Some of the reasons a physician may resort to surgery include ongoing significant pain, weakness, numbness, difficulty walking, rapidly worsening symptoms, or inability to continue with normal activities. Dr. Fischer will perform thorough diagnostic testing to ensure surgery is best. The most common types of spinal decompression surgeries are spinal fusion, discectomy, laminectomy, laminaplasty, or foraminotomy. If you experience symptoms of spinal nerve compression, seek medical treatment to get the help you need.

Contact our office today to schedule a consultation.