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Posted in: Neck pain, and Spinal stenosis.

MRI Results please explain

Started by bluebird05 on 12/13/2010 1:56pm

I recently injured my neck and have had alot of significant pain in my neck, headaches, electrical feelings shooting down my left arm to my finger tips, sometimes on the right but not nearly as much as the left, upper are weakness, crunching or popping sensation sometimes when I turn my head, as well as mild intermitent ringing in the ears . At times when I wake up My pain is severe and I feel like I can't move or the pain will wake me up in the middle of the night.

I had a MRI done and I'm wondering what it is I'm looking at and am I gonna need surgery which really scares me.

Here is what the MRI without contrast says:

Findings: Alignment of the vertebral bodies is normal. Moderate disk space narrowing is noted at C4-5 and C5-6. The remainder of the intervertrabal disk as well as the vertebra bodies maintain normal height. The spinal cord maintains normal caliber, contour and signal. Marrow of the visualized bony structures is normal.

At C4-5 there is a disk bulge without canal or neural foraminal stenosis.

At C5-6 disk bulge is seen flattening the ventral aspect of the spinal canal producing no central canal or neural foraminal stenosis.

At C6-7 disk bulge is seen with lateral disk protrusion osteophyte complex. It indents on the ventral aspect of the spinal canal on the left. It mildly efaces the left ventral spinal cord. It produces mild central canal stenosis and moderate to severe left neural foraminal stenosis. This would be affecting the C7 nerve root. Correlate with distribution of pt. symptoms.
The visualized paravertebral sof tissues are grossly within the normal range.

Impression: At C6-7 broad -based disk bulge osteophyte complex is seen. There is a superimposed left paracentral and lateral as well as probably partially foraminal disk protrusion osteophyte complex that indents on the left ventral aspect of the spinal canal. At most it produces mild central canal stenosis and moderate left neural foraminal stenosis. Correlate with distribution of pt's symptoms.

Any thoughts are appreciated. I'm scared and don't have my apt. till next Monday with my Dr.

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1 Response


hi bluebird sorry you find yourself in this painful situation....i have been through it too.
its not terrible you do have minor disc bulges atC4/5 and C5/6. but there is a more serious disc and arthritic condition at C6/7. there is pressure on a nerve root the branches off the spinal canal. there is also some pressure on the central canal. your symptoms of more pain on the left side seem to correlate with the moderate pressure on the nerve root on the left.
a radiologist read this and wrote the report. he is suggesting you see a surgeon who can examine you thoroughly. he will check your reflexes, muscular strength and skin sensations.
he may want you to go through physical therapy. if that is not successful he may prescribe a steroid shot. if that fails you may need surgery but i think you should feel confident that the problem will be solved...let us know what he says....pete