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Old 01-18-2012, 02:36 PM   #1
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please help me understand

hi
I have just received my mri result and have tried to find out through searching the web about certain things in the mri findings but i'm still confused and would like to ask for advice from anyone here if they could explain it to me it would be most appreciated and thanks for your time for reading my post . this is the complete report

clinical history
tingling in a left ulnar nerve distribution

technique
t1 sagittal t2 sagittal t2 axial

findings
normal cervical vertebral alignmentand bone marrow signal . there are mild cervical disc degenerative changes but there is no disc herniation or neural compression . the central canal is capacious at all levels and the cervical cord and posterior fossa structures return normal signal throughout.there is no significant foraminal stenosis . the pre and paravenebral soft tissue are normal . normal upper thoracic spine .

opinion
mild cervical disc degenerative changes with no neural compression .

 
Old 01-19-2012, 02:35 PM   #2
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Re: please help me understand

I don't know much about reading MRIs....though some other members can prob help there.

What I do know is that images are not always as helpful in back/spine land as one would hope. A painful, even debilitating, condition may look like nothing at all on an MRI and someone with no pain or issues may look like a mess on a picture. It is truly annoying but it means you should always keep advocating for yourself and asking for help if you are in pain. Many of us back boardies have found it can take a couple docs to get the one who offers a real helping hand. DON'T ever let anyone say "it isn't a big deal" and dismiss you...if it hurts, it matters.

A prior doc (switched b/c of a move and b/c I needed to move to a surgical consult) had a really great take on things once. At the time, the MRI showed a very minor issue (in the end there was a bigger one there that the films didnt show well...the surgeon was shocked when he "got in there" and saw the degree of degeneration). He told me that it was medically quite minor BUT he knew from firsthand experience that it still FELT like a bullet to the spine. I needed that and appreciated him validating my pain.

Of course, you haven't said anything that indicates your doc ISN'T taking the pain seriously, but the findings sound "medically minor" and so I just want to send some understanding and validation.

 
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Old 01-20-2012, 06:50 AM   #3
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Re: please help me understand

The good news is that your cervical spine looks good. There are some minor degenerative changes but nothing that indicates that there is any nerve compression. Most people beyond the age of the 20s will show a little bit of degeneration of the discs. It is just a normal process of living with gravity!

[B] the central canal is capacious at all levels and the cervical cord and posterior fossa structures return normal signal throughout[/B]

The good news is that you have plenty of room in the spinal canal (where all the nerves have to pass). There are no disc herniations or compressed nerves.

I see that the symptom you had was a tingling in the left ulnar nerve distribution. I had something similar and it turned out to be due to compression of the ulnar nerve itself. This is a fairly common ailment, sometimes caused from the position one sleeps in (elbow bent) or if a patient tends to lean on an elbow when sitting, etc.

 
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