What is Lumbar Radicular Pain and How to Treat it?

Lumbar radicular pain is caused by the compression of nerve roots in your spine. The disease associated with it is known as lumbar radiculopathy. 

The symptoms of this disease can manifest themselves in many different ways. Pain, weakness, and numbness of the buttock or leg are the most common signs of lumbar radiculopathy developing. 

Another word for this disease is Sciatica. The leg-related pain caused by this disease is directly related to the compression of the nerve roots in your spine. This is different from other types of spinal compression, which cause pain in the lumbar spine, also called referred pain. 

Causes of Lumbar Radicular Pain

There are a number of different conditions that can lead to lumbar radiculopathy. The sole requirement for this disease to develop in your spine is the irritation or compression of the spinal nerve roots. 

As a result, there are many alternative conditions that can cause it:

  • Lumbar disc herniation. 
  • Osteophyte formation. 
  • Spinal stenosis. 
  • Foraminal stenosis. 
  • Spondylolisthesis. 
  • More degenerative disorders.  

Due to the probability of lumbar radicular pain being the result of multiple spinal issues, it can be extremely painful and difficult to treat. 

The implants that Premia Spine offers its patients are designed to make the surgery you undergo easier and less painful. 

It’s our goal to assist in helping you get back to your best as soon as possible, with as little pain as possible. 

Before you diagnose yourself with any lumbar condition, whether it’s radiculopathy or something else, you need to see a spinal doctor for a professional diagnosis. 

Your doctor can give you a full physical exam, as well as look for any issues you have related to the balance or movement of your spine. 

Your doctor is going to check for things like the loss of your extremity reflexes, and issues with your senses, weakness of the muscles, or any unusual reflexes which may indicate that your spinal cord is involved. 

After this physical exam, if your doctor suspects you might have a lumbar radicular issue, you’re going to need to get an X-ray and an MRI. 

These two are the most commonly used methods of image testing to evaluate whether or not you have lumbar radiculopathy. However, a CT myelogram can be utilized instead of an MRI is not possible due to a pacemaker or something similar. 

How to Treat Lumbar Radicular Pain

There are a number of different surgical treatments that can be used for lumbar radiculopathy, depending on what alternative spinal condition was the cause of it. 

Typically speaking, all of these surgeries involve decompressing the nerve in some way or stabilizing the spine. 

It’s crucial that you speak to your spinal doctor and seek treatment for spinal radiculopathy as soon as possible. 

Not only can the condition be exceedingly painful, but the longer you leave it untreated, the higher the risk that your symptoms can develop into permanent conditions. 

In more extreme cases where a person left their lumbar radiculopathy untreated for an extensive period of time, there is a heightened risk of paralysis developing. 

With a combination of treatment and the possibility of surgery, symptoms can improve within six weeks to three months. 

Radicular Pain Symptoms

Due to the nature of the compressed nerve, radicular pain symptoms primarily revolve around the foot and leg. 

There are a number of different potential symptoms that a person may experience, including: 

  • A shooting or burning pain in the thigh, calve, or foot. 
  • A numbness of leg muscles. 
  • Leg-related weakness. 
  • Leg-related reflex loss. 

There are several other symptoms that you may experience, but these are by far the most common indicators of a developing radicular problem. 

How Prima Spine Helps Ease Lumbar Radicular Pain

Our TOPS system is a spinal alternative to fusion that not only makes surgery and day-to-day life less painful, but it ensures that you maintain a full range of motion after you’ve healed from the surgery. 

In extreme cases of lumbar radicular pain, it may be necessary for you to undergo surgery. 

This is particularly common in cases where the pain is left untreated and develops into a much bigger and more painful operation. 

In the event of this happening, our specialists are here to help. If you have any questions about the TOPS system, lumbar radicular pain, or anything else related to the health of your spine, our agents are here to chat. 

You can get in touch with us through our website. From there, we can advise you on what measures you should take to help treat your back pain, as well as whether or not you should consider the TOPS system as a surgical solution. 

Lumbar Radicular Pain FAQs

How Can I Sleep with Lumbar Radicular Pain?

A common issue that a lot of people suffering from lumbar radicular pain have is managing to fall asleep at night. The ache and pain of the condition can result in tossing and turning, ultimately leading you to a sleepless night. 

Many people that suffer from conditions like spinal stenosis find that the most comfortable position to ease back pain while sleeping is on their side in the fetal position. 

The fetal position is when you curl your knees up towards your abdomen while lying on your side. 

Alternatively, you could try ensuring that your head and knees are elevated in some capacity while you sleep, either through the use of pillows, your position or by using an adjustable bed or recliner. 

Do I Have to Get Surgery if I have Lumbar Radiculopathy?

It is not always necessary to undergo surgery for lumbar radiculopathy. It’s only in cases where the condition is extreme or has been fully left untreated that you are going to need a more extensive operation. 

Whether or not you need surgery is also related to the lumbar issue that caused your radiculopathy in the first place. 

Before deciding on how you want to treat your pain, always seek the professional opinion of your doctor. Get an X-ray, MRI, and a full physical done, and allow them to deduce what your best course of action is. 

In the event that the lumbar Radicular pain isn’t being caused by any significant issue, it’s possible to treat it with specific exercises and physical therapy that has been designed to specifically stabilize the spine 

These exercises help your spine to promote more open space so that the compressed spinal nerve roots have more room. 

As well as physical therapy, you can complement your treatment through the use of medications. 

Always take medications on the advice of your doctor, and make sure that they give you a prescription for anything you’re taking while treating lumbar radiculopathy. 

Typical medications that you are going to be prescribed while treating lumbar radiculopathy are the likes of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. 

These drugs are designed to reduce the swelling that may be causing the nerve compression and can also help relieve the pain while you work towards a more permanent solution to the issue. 

If you do try to treat your lumbar radiculopathy manually and without therapy, it can take six to 12 weeks of constant treatment for you to see results. 

However, this route helps you to avoid what could be a difficult and expensive surgery.