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What can a CT scan show that an MRI can't?

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Old 08-11-2003, 06:56 AM   #1
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: PA United States
Posts: 402
ChristinaD HB User
Post What can a CT scan show that an MRI can't?

I haven't had a CT that is why I am wondering. I fear that there is something going on and the MRI just isn't picking it up.
27 years old
1993: T1 to L1 fusion due to scoliosis at age 17
2000: Tore and ruptured L4 L5 & L5 S1-it finally got better after about a year. Did really well for about a year.
June 2002: Had a relapse and tore/ruptured disc again.
Now I'm 14 months into it and the pain is still there.
Can't deal with it anymore so I'm having a discectomy in Sept. Hoping and praying that it takes care of my problems!!

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Old 08-11-2003, 07:12 AM   #2
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 53
Johnny13ravo HB User

I think that an MRI shows soft tissue better and a CAT scan shows bone structures better.

------------------[list=a] [*] 27 years old computer programmer[*] April 1996 - Bulging L4/L5 disk from car accident.[*] October 2002 - Low back pain and pain in left leg.[*] October 2002 - See chiropractor with minimal relief.[*] November 2002 - MRI shows L4/L5 moderate disk herniation (left and center)[*] January 2003 - Try PT for a couple of weeks some relief until chiropractor visit.[*] February 2003 - Chiropractor does traction, resulting in first instance of numbness in foot.[*] Late February 2003 and still going - New Physical Therapist, not much relief yet...[*] March 2003 - Very light pain in right leg in addition to left, EMG suggests nerve damage/irritaion in both legs.[*] March 2003 - Second MRI shows L4/L5 moderate disk herniation (left and center), slightly larger[*] April 3, 2003 - Epidural Injection, slight pain relief, more tingling in left leg and right.[*] April 17, 2003 - Going for second epidural injection.[*] April 22,2003 - Feeling some relief, started doing exersices from the McKenzie book.[*] May 1, 2003 - Third epidural injection[*] May 7, 2003 - Still in pain, less numbness and tingling[*] June 21, 2003 - Fell in the house, ten times worse.[*] July 14, 2003 - Had laminectomy / micro-discectomy, decompression of nerves on both sides all done from the left side.[*] July 23, 2003 - Lots of burning in both legs.
August 8, 2003 - Still feel like crap, PT makes me feel worse.[/list=a]

Old 08-16-2003, 02:21 PM   #3
Kali M
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: FL USA
Posts: 409
Kali M HB User

I may be in for a CT scan soon as well. My orthopedic surgeon asked me on my last visit if I'd had one (have now had 3 MRI's; two in Europe, one in the US). I have had chronic LBP/Rt hip pain x 2.5 years, 2 ESI's, 2 facet blocks, 2 radio-frequency ablations, 1 IDET - no success. My doc mentioned another of his patients who had unremarkable (aka "good") MRI's but continuing pain. He had her get a CT and they found (if I am remembering his story correctly) a fractured vertebrae which had NOT shown up on the MRI.

If they're offering you a CT, you've already had an MRI, you're in pain, and you have insurance - get it!

* * * * * * * *
Discography 10/29/02
IDET (single level) 10/30/02

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