After suffering from thoracic back pain for about 12 years, my doctor sent me for x-rays, stating that they are a great diagnostic tool for showing any osteporosis, degenerative discs, or growths on my spine. The result was that I had "mild" kyphosis in my thoracic back but the spine alignment was normal. They pain I started feeling 12 years ago first began in my very sore muscles in the upper back and later progressed to the area around my spine between the shoulder blades. Now I have burning, tingling and numbness in this part of my spine and there are days when my back is screaming and when I go to bed unable to fall asleep from the pain. What's more, I lost sensation in about a good 10-cm part of my mid-upper spine such that when I place an ice back there to help the inflammation, I feel nothing, and that scares me more than anything. When I touch my spine there, two or three vertabrae feel like they're sticking out and they hurt to touch like a bruise would. I slouch because it's easier than keeping my back straight. I have been repeatedly asking for an MRI for the past few years and my doctor claims that it wouldn't show us anything significant that the x-rays already hasn't.
Have any of you who suffer from kyphosis been diagnosed via an x-ray test only? How important is it to obtain an MRI test in order to determine the extent of this problem? Whoever said that kyphosis causes only "mild discomfort" was either lying or never had kyphosis.
I see you are in Canada so you are dealing with a different system than we have in the US. I know it is more difficult to get a MRI. In the US they order MRIs if anything seems slightly amiss, so you need to take this difference into account when you read my reply.
I would want to have an MRI if I were in your position. X-rays do not show things that are visible on MRI and vice versa. Each has its own purposes. MRI is good at showing soft tissue and nerves...whether you have a herniated disc, things with the facet joints, nerve compression, etc.
You may have things going on other than the kyphosis that are causing your pain. I'm not sure how you go about pursuing a MRI, but I would recommend you get one if you can!