A bone spur is an abnormal bone growth. Bone spurs in the neck occur on the vertebrae. They are not dangerous, but they can cause inflammation and interfere with the function of other parts in the spine, like ligaments, discs, tendons, and nerves. A bone spur is also referred to as an osteophyte.
What Causes a Bone Spur?
Bone spurs can result from two different causes:
- A response to pressure or stress on the bone over a long period of time.
- Osteoarthritis, the result of the normal aging process that breaks down cartilage, which is the tissue that covers the ends of bones. This causes pain and swelling, resulting in the body creating bone spurs to try to correct the problem.
What are the Symptoms of a Bone Spur?
- Back ache
- Pain, numbness, or weakness in other areas depending on where the bone spur has formed
- You may experience shooting or radiating pain in your arms, leg, or neck
How is an Osteophyte Diagnosed?
The first step toward diagnosis and bone spur treatment is a physical exam by one of our physicians. They can also be diagnosed by X-ray, MRI, myelogram, bone scan, discography, CT scan.
Available Bone Spur Treatment Options:
We have several bone spur treatment methods:
- Medication: Prescriptions for anti-inflammatory medications are common to reduce the pain and swelling.
- Surgery: If surgery is required for a bone spur, treatment can often be provided in an outpatient setting with a minimally invasive surgical procedure. The procedures are completed either in our spine dedicated surgical center or the local hospital.
Types of possible surgery:
- Minimally Invasive Laminotomy
- Minimally Invasive Laminectomy
- Minimally Invasive Far Lateral Foraminotomy
- Cervical Discectomy and Osteophytectomy