What are the effects of bone spurs?
Bone spurs can cause problems in the back when they form in and around the facet joints and the intervertebral disc. Facet joints have a rich nerve supply, including tiny nerve endings called nociceptors that are responsible for a specific type of back pain.
The facet joint can develop bone spurs, or osteophytes, as well as synovial cysts that act as cushions to prevent arthritic bone from grinding against other structures.
If an excessive amount of bone spurs form, they can occupy and narrow the foraminal canal that is formed by the facet joint above and below each vertebra. They can also cause narrowing of the spinal canal. This narrowing can cause pinching of the exiting nerve root that is trying to exit the spine on its way to one of extremities. If symptoms of a pinched nerve occur due to this condition, it is called foraminal stenosis.