Lumbar spinal stenosis, cauda equina syndrome, and multiple lumbosacral radiculopathies

Phys Med Rehabil Clin N Am. 2002 Aug;13(3):713-33, ix. doi: 10.1016/s1047-9651(02)00013-x.


Narrowing of the vertebral canal, the lateral recess, or the neural foramina causes lumbar spinal stenosis. Stenosis results from degenerative changes that usually are superimposed on a congenitally narrowed spinal canal and can result in significant pain and disability, especially in the elderly. Signs and symptoms are related to the compression of neural and vascular elements from the limited canal space. The article reviews the anatomy and pathophysiology, clinical syndrome, diagnostic workup, and natural history of lumbar spinal stenosis to aid in proper diagnosis and treatment.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Electrodiagnosis
  • Humans
  • Intervertebral Disc / physiopathology
  • Intervertebral Disc Displacement / physiopathology
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Polyradiculopathy* / physiopathology
  • Polyradiculopathy* / therapy
  • Radiculopathy*
  • Spinal Fusion
  • Spinal Stenosis* / diagnosis
  • Spinal Stenosis* / physiopathology
  • Spinal Stenosis* / therapy