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Addressing the Aches and Pains of Aging

Age may have its privileges, but unfortunately, the aches and pains of getting older can make it hard to enjoy life’s simple pleasures, like spending time with family and friends or pursuing lifelong hobbies.

The good news, however, is that advances in pain medicine and minimally invasive interventional procedures mean many of those aches and pains can be addressed. They may not always disappear entirely, but pain can be reduced to such a degree that our senior patients can participate in the things they enjoy and regain their quality of life.

NSPC-affiliated specialists believe old age doesn’t have to be a pain!

Is Pain Normal With Aging?

Pain is not a normal part of the aging process, but it is common among seniors. The body undergoes numerous changes as we age, such as decreased bone density, loss of muscle mass, and wear and tear on joints. These changes can lead to chronic pain, which can negatively impact the quality of life of older individuals.

What Pain Is Associated With Aging?

As we age, various types of pain can occur, including:

  • Joint pain: Arthritis is a common condition among seniors, which can lead to joint pain and stiffness.
  • Back pain: Spinal compression fractures, spinal stenosis, and failed back surgery syndrome are all common causes of back pain among seniors.
  • Neuropathic pain: Nerve damage can occur due to age-related conditions such as diabetes, which can lead to neuropathic pain.

Treatments for Common Conditions Among Older Adults

Advances in medicine and minimally invasive procedures mean that seniors no longer have to suffer from chronic pain. Here are some treatments for conditions that are common among older adults:


Seniors with spinal compression fractures can benefit from this minimally invasive procedure. A small balloon is inserted into the broken bone and inflated, which allows a special cement to be injected into the bone to raise it to its normal height. This procedure can relieve the pressure on nearby nerves and often results in an immediate resolution of pain.

Read More: Kyphoplasty Reduces Healthcare Costs and Restores Quality of Life


Seniors with knee arthritis can benefit from this treatment, which involves injecting a material that mimics the body's natural lubricating joint fluid. This can help alleviate pain and stiffness for several months.

Spinal Cord Stimulation (SCS)

Older adults with spinal stenosis can benefit from Spinal Cord Stimulation (SCS). In this procedure, small electrical wires that receive electrical impulses are implanted near the spinal cord. A small external device can be used to "zap" feelings of pain and discomfort and replace them with a more pleasing tingling feeling.

Radiofrequency Neurotomy (Ablation)

Post-laminectomy syndrome can be addressed with radiofrequency neurotomy (ablation), which uses heat to deaden nerve endings that send pain signals.

These procedures, and many others, can be performed right in the doctor's office under local anesthesia, usually in just under two hours. Small, precise needles are utilized with X-ray guidance, eliminating the need for any open incisions.

Seek Treatment within the NSPC Network of Practices

If, as you age, you begin experiencing chronic pain, know that there are options for relief. Speak with one of our affiliated pain specialists about your pain and discover how these treatments can change your life.

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