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Old 05-24-2004, 12:42 PM   #1
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MarianJ HB User
Congenitally Narrowed Canal

Hello Everyone
I usually post on the Back Problems Board. But today I am hear because I just got the results of my latest cervical MRI. I have not updated my signature yet as I will have to change the new findings. I will post the report in it's entirety, but my question is this. Does anyone know what Congenitally Narrowed Canal actually means?

Cervical MRIThere is straightening of the normal cervical lordosis. There is mild congenital narrowing of the spinal canal. The signal originating from the visualized marrow is normal. There is a broad based central herniation present at the C4-5 slightly asymmetric to the left. There is mild flattening of the ventral aspect of the canal. There is also broad based central herniation present at C5-6 also slightly asymmetric to the left also resulting in mild flattening of the cervical cord. There is a very small central C6-7 herniated disc. There is no evidence of cord edema or neoplasm.

Impression: Herniated discs at C4-5, C5-6, and C6-7 as described. There may be slight superior extrusion of disc material at the C4-5 level. The disc herniations are not markedly large, however, as they are superimposed on a congenitally narrowed canal, they do result in some cord flattening at the C4-5 and C5-6 levels.
Jeanne

_____________________
~LUMBAR~
Posterolateral Fusion & Infuse with Laminectomy on L4,L5,S1 June 2003
Instrumentation = 2 Rods, 6 Screws, 2 Disc Spacers
~CERVICAL~
Loss of Cervical Lordosis with Reversal of the Curvature
C4-5 & C6-7 Disc Bulges, Flattening of the Ventral Margin of the Cord
C5-6 Left Foraminal Herniation, Moderate Foraminal Stenosis

Fibromyalgia, Bursitis, Diabetes, Anemia, Asthma, Acid Reflux

Last edited by MarianJ; 05-24-2004 at 12:47 PM.

 
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Old 05-26-2004, 05:03 AM   #2
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rgsmoose HB User
Re: Congenitally Narrowed Canal

A congenitally narrowed canal simply means your spinal canal is narrower (smaller) than normal. That's just the way your body developed - or, in your case (and mine), it's the way our bodies didn't develop enough. Unless it's really tight, having a narrower spinal canal isn't a problem. The real issue comes when your disks start degenerating and the bone spurs grow and start pushing into the spinal canal. That's when your spinal cord starts getting compressed. You'll get earlier and more pronounced symptoms if you get a ruptured disk on top of all that.

That's what happened to me, unfortunately. Hope you'll be able to get through life without this impacting you too much. Good luck.

 
Old 05-30-2004, 08:07 PM   #3
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MarianJ HB User
Re: Congenitally Narrowed Canal

Hello Rgsmoose
Thank you for replying to my post. I am sorry to hear that you were also have a form of stenosis. I should have realized this is what it meant as this was on my first report over a year ago. I just didn't know that this form was because our canal did not develop correctly. From your statement it doesn't seem as if things worked out to well for you and I am sorry. If you don't mind be asking, did you ever suffer with pain in your biceps? This is my latest symptom and I have had it for two months. I can't move both my arms in certain position's any longer as the pain can become excruciating. It also has traveled behind both arms. The strangest thing is that I don't feel the pain all that much in my shoulders which would be the normal symptom. Also both hands do go numb and I did have a quick exam for carpal tunnel and that was ruled out. But I guess things could still be a lot worse as I had my injury over 10 years ago. I really do hope that you don't suffer with to much pain.
Jeanne

____________________
~LUMBAR~
Posterolateral Fusion & Infuse with Laminectomy on L4,L5,S1 June 2003
Instrumentation = 2 Rods, 6 Screws, 2 Disc Spacers
~CERVICAL~
Straightening of the Normal Cervical Lordosis.
Mild Congenital Narrowing of the Spinal Canal.
C4-5, C5-6, C6-7 Herniated Discs
C4-5 & C5-6 , Cord Flattening at these levels.

Fibromyalgia, Bursitis, Diabetes, Anemia, Asthma, Acid Reflux, Migraine's

 
Old 05-31-2004, 11:16 AM   #4
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rgsmoose HB User
Re: Congenitally Narrowed Canal

I was hesitating to answer you, because you may start thinking things that aren't there. Remember - everybody's different, and the same amount of stenosis to one person is something totally different to another.

Anyway, yes, the cervical stenosis (cervical spondylotic stenosis) did affect my arms. It was particularly my right tricep where I lost much of my strength. I didn't realize I had as severe aproblem as I had, so it went on too long. I ended up requiring a C5-C6 corpectomy (removal of the bodies of C5 & C6, now fused C4 - C7). This helped with the symptoms for a bit, but they came back. I had also had a problem with C3-C4, but the surgeons didn't do anything the first time. I next had a C3/C4/C5 laminaplasty to alleviate that problem. The pain and muscle spasms are pretty much gone now, but I've lost significant strength in my arms, particularly the right. It may have been a direct cause of the stenosis or it might be from the myelomalacia (my spinal cord was compressed for too long and it was damaged, and spinal cords do not regenerate). So if you have a problem where the surgeons are recommending decompression surgery, don't delay too much. Stenosis can (that's not a definate, so don't get too jittery) lead to severe problems. And it can also not. Keep that in mind. Just don't ignore the problems.

Stenosis can also affect your lumbar arfea, as I found out. I had to have an L4/L5 laminectomy because of stenosis too. All this because my parents genes weren't programmed exactly correctly. Oh well, can't yell at them now.

So, good luck with your problems. I hope it doesn't lead to severe issues like I and others have had. It doesn't always have to.

 
Old 06-01-2004, 06:40 PM   #5
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MarianJ HB User
Re: Congenitally Narrowed Canal

Hello Rgsmoose
I do understand about your hesitations on answering my post. Actually I thank you for being so considerate to take the time to explain the answer to my question. The truth of the matter is that I didn't know what Congenitally meant and I really feel foolish about it now.....

After reading your reply I also had to find a diagram on the web to see were the tricep is located in the arm. Yes, I too have pain in that area as well. But this pain can become quite unbearable at times. I have been tested by both my neuro surgeon and my pain management doctor and they say I have not lost any strength. I feel as if I have but their testing states otherwise. I can know longer open jars and have difficulty holding a gallon of milk. But it may be do to the pain that I have in my arms. I also had stenosis in my lumbar area and had a laminectomy with my fusion. My mother-in-law would always ask me how I got this at my age of 39. I just never had the answer. I guess perhaps I was born with that as well.

I am sorry that you had to have 2 cervical surgery's. I am praying that you are at least 75% pain free. I am so sorry that you have lost so much strength in your arms. That must be very difficult for you. I can't lift things right now because of the pain in my arms and I am praying that this is only temporary. I need my cane to walk and I have been trying to walk without it because of my arm pain. I went to my pain management doctor with a lighter cane and they were angry because I didn't have my quad cane. They just don't realize how much my arms hurt. Again I thank you for explaining everything to me.
Jeanne

 
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