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  • Can someone translate my MRI in layman terms

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    Old 11-09-2015, 03:31 PM   #1
    mybackithurts
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    Can someone translate my MRI in layman terms

    I got my results from an MRI today.

    Findings:
    Schmorl's node in the inferior T12 endplate, and mild grade 1 retrolisthesis of L5 on S1. Otherwise, vertevral body height and aliignment are normal. Aside from degenerative marrow changes in the L5 inferior endplate, marrow signal is normal. Mild multilevel degenerative disk dessication most pronounced at L5-S1. Suspected bilateral pars defects at L4-5.

    Normal perivertabral and posterior paraspinal soft tissues. Conus terminates normally at L1-2. Cauda equina is normal. Included intra-abdominopelvic structures normal.

    On axial images: T12-L1 through L2-3: No spinal canal or neuroforaminal narrowing. L3-4: Mild bilateral facet arthropathy without spinal canal or neuroforaminal narrowing. L4-5: Moderate bilateral facet arthropathy without spinal canal or neurofaminal narrowing. Suspected biltareal pars defects. L5-S1: Broad based right subarticular/foraminal disk protrusion in combination with bilateral facet arthropathy contributes to moderate to severe right neuroforaminal narrowing, mild left neuroforaminal narrowing and effacement of the right greater than left ventral thecal sac.

    IMPRESSION:
    Mulitlevel degenerative changes fully detailed above and most pronounced at L5-S1 where there is moderate to severe right neuroforaminal narrowing, mild left neuroforaminal narrowing and right greater than left ventral thecal sac effacement.

    Suspect bilateral L4-5 pars defects. Correlation with lumbar spine radiographs or CT may be helpful for further evaluation.

    I am setting an appt with a neurosurgeon. I initially hurt my 17 years ago (21). A couple of months ago I started having numbness and pain in my foot. Went to orthopedic doc and he said to get mri because it was probably back related. I am nervous about having surgery because of horror stories I have heard. Was just wondering if anyone has had similar findings that warranted surgery. Thanks and this site is a plethora of I formation and support.

    Last edited by mybackithurts; 11-09-2015 at 07:55 PM. Reason: Add more info

     
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    Old 11-10-2015, 07:11 PM   #2
    teteri66
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    Re: Can someone translate my MRI in layman terms

    Welcome to the board. Did you play contact sports in high school or college, or were you involved in gymnastics or diving? The reason I ask is because of the pars defects and mild spondylolisthesis. These are often caused by sports or activities were the lumbar spine is often extended or from contact sports.

    Most of the lumbar segments are fine, with very slight degenerative change. L4-5, and L3-4 to a lesser extent, are affected with some indications of arthritis in the facet joints. This can cause the joint to enlarge but at L4-5 it is not causing any narrowing of the foramen or central canal.

    The situation at L5-S1 is a little worse. There is a disc protrusion as well as enlarged facet joint which together are causing stenosis in the foramen on both left and right side. (The foramina is an opening through which the spinal nerve exits the spine and goes out to innervate a particular part of the body. When the opening narrows or get clogged, it results in a constriction of the nerve that needs to pass through.). Also this tissue that has increased in size is pushing into the central spine area where it is effacing the thecal sac...which is a membrane that contains the bundled nerves of the central canal.

    This report would indicate that your pain should be worse in your right leg.

    A spondylolisthesis is when one vertebra slips over the top of the adjacent vertebra. It can be caused by a pars defect or by degenerative changes that wear down the pars, and it often results in instability at that level. The report suggests you get further testing to determine what is going on. I would suggest a flexion/extension x-ray as it is cheaper than a CT scan and picks up the spondylolisthesis nicely.

     
    Old 11-10-2015, 07:30 PM   #3
    mybackithurts
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    Re: Can someone translate my MRI in layman terms

    Thank you so much for the reply. Yes I did play sports all through my youth and actually herniated my disc 17 years ago playing baseball. I have had pain on and off since then but just limited my activity once it started hurting. I have pain in both legs but the numbness is in my left leg and foot more than my right. In the past I have done therapy and epidurals but I fear this time is gone too far and will have to have surgery which really frightens me. Thank you for your input. I really appreciate it

    Last edited by mybackithurts; 11-10-2015 at 07:34 PM. Reason: Stupid autocorrect

     
    Old 11-11-2015, 03:19 PM   #4
    teteri66
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    Re: Can someone translate my MRI in layman terms

    Having more pain in your left leg is why we are cautioned to take MRI results with a grain of salt. It is only one piece of the diagnostic puzzle and needs to be corrected with a physical exam, a basic neurological exam and further testing as needed to accurately determine the real pain generator.

    You cannot tell from the MRI report that surgery is a given. There may be other options for you. You will want to get more than one opinion, especially if surgery is recommended. It is always a good idea to consult with both a neurosurgeon and an orthopedic spine surgeon as they sometimes have slightly different opinions as to how to proceed. Good to have options!

     
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