Spinal stenosis places pressure on the spinal cord and/or nerves by a narrowing of the spinal canal. Most spinal stenosis conditions occur in the lower back and so are called lumbar spinal stenosis. In the upper back, it is called cervical spinal stenosis. Even though spinal stenosis can be found in many other areas of the spine, it is these two areas which are affected the most. Unfortunately, spinal stenosis can cause chronic pain by compressing the nerve root, especially along the back of the leg.