Spinal stenosis is something that can be treated or managed conservatively in many cases.
Here's an excerpt from a 2016 Cochrane review, detailing their conclusions of a study comparing surgical vs. non-surgical care for spinal stenosis.
"We have very little confidence to conclude whether surgical treatment or a conservative approach is better for lumbar spinal stenosis, and we can provide no new recommendations to guide clinical practice. However, it should be noted that the rate of side effects ranged from 10% to 24% in surgical cases, and no side effects were reported for any conservative treatment. No clear benefits were observed with surgery versus non-surgical treatment. These findings suggest that clinicians should be very careful in informing patients about possible treatment options, especially given that conservative treatment options have resulted in no reported side effects. High-quality research is needed to compare surgical versus conservative care for individuals with lumbar spinal stenosis."
As you can see, surgery should be a last option, not first line defense. Side effects reports were from 10%-24% whereas non-surgical treatment was 0% complication.
Do you or someone you know have spinal stenosis?