Herniated Disc Questions and Answers Archive 2011 Part 2

This Q&A section is not intended to diagnose or treat any medical condition. Any medical condition should be referred to a qualified medical professional.

Q: Hi, first wanted to say, found your site & love it. Thank you! I recently had a microdisectomy done on 1/13/11 after surgery i could not feel my right leg at all as if it was not even there! they did another mri & sent me straight back to surgery said i reherniated on 1/14/11. when a nurse came in the room later in the night she said "so i hear you had to have a blood clot removed today?" so i still am not sure as to what exactly they removed but either way my leg still felt as though it was not there (total paralysis) to make this long story a little shorter i will attach copy of my original mri as i do not have any of the others at this time. but i did get some of my leg back i have my original symptoms (numbness ,tingling,dribbling urine, sexual difficulties, saddle anesthesia & SEVERE sciatica) & also now i have foot drop. after surgery by a very well known & highly recommended dr. surgeon went to talk to my family & told them there was alot of nerve damage done & it will take a very long time for me to heal. my question to you is, does foot drop ever go away or do you know of anyone who has recovered from it? I am getting PT 3 days a week. sorry so long! also do you ever really get your life back with these symptoms? Equipment: 1.5 Tesla Siemens Espree OPEN MRI with ultra high-performance gradients COMPARISON STUDIES: Plain films 12/25/10. INDICATION: 35-year-old female with right low back pain since November 2010 with numbness and tingling in the right lower extremity. MRI OF THE LUMBAR SPINE: Sagittal T1; T2; STIR, axial T2 and oblique axial long TR without gadolinium. FINDINGS: At L4-5 there is moderate broad-based disc protrusion within the central and right paracentral aspect which is causing moderate to severe right lateral recess narrowing at the level of the L4-5 disc space. There is T2 hyperintensity along the posterior central aspect of the annulus which may represent an acute to subacute annular tear. The disc protrusion is abutting right traversing L5 nerve root.I n addition to this broad-based disc protrusion slightly inferior to this, there is a disc fragment which may represent a sequestered disc fragment or free disc fragment at the level of the superior to mid vertebral body of L5. The disc fragment measures 12 mm in its craniocaudal extent, 8 mm in its anteroposterior extent and 11 mm in its transverse dimension. It is causing severe right lateral recess narrowing at the level of the mid vertebral body of L5. It is also mildly abutting the traversing right S1 nerve root and intrathecal course of L5 as well. There is overall moderate central canal stenosis with the thecal sac by the disc protrusion as well as the disc fragment with the thecal sac slightly deviated to the left. In addition, there is facetal hypertrophy and mild ligamentum flaval hypertrophy which cause a mild bilateral neural foraminal narrowing. At L1-2 and L2-3 the discs appear unremarkable. The central canal and neural foramina are patent. AT L3-4 there is a minor annular bulge. The central canal and neural foramina are patent. At L5-S1 there is a mild left paracentral annular bulge and mild facetal hypertrophy. The central canal and neural foramina are patent. The alignment of the lumbar spine is anatomic in the sagittal plane. The vertebral body heights and disc space heights are maintained. There is a mild disc desiccation at L4-5 and L5-S1 levels. The distal spinal cord, conus medullaris and cauda equina are of normal signal intensity and morphology. The conus is at the level of the inferior endplate of L1. IMPRESSION: At L4-5 there is a moderate broad-based right paracentral and lateral recess disc protrusion which is causing moderate-to severe right lateral recess narrowing and is abutting the right traversing L5 nerve root at the level of L4-5 disc space. Slightly inferior to this there is a disc fragment measuring 12 x 8 x 11 mm which may represent a sequestered or a free disc fragment at the level of upper to mid vertebral body of L5 where it is causing severe right lateral recess narrowing and is probably abutting the intrathecal course of the traversing right L5 and S1 nerve roots as well and is causing severe right lateral recess narrowing and overall moderate central canal stenosis at the level of the superior to mid level of L5. Thanks for any input & piece of mind! Jolene

Comment: I have pain in my back which goes right down the calves and when I walk I get pain and numbness otherwise when I am sitting or sleeping there is no pain at all. As suggested by my dr. I got the MRI done conclusion of the MRI is as follows diffuse posterior bulge and broad base posterocentral herniation of L4-5 disc compressing the the cal sac and budding nerve root and encroaching the bilateral neural foramen . Mild factual arthropathy is seen at this level. Vicky

Q: I have had severe back pain, sciatica and urinary incontinence for 2years. I recently had laser surgery for multiple disc herniations. They have now discovered multiple herniations in the thoracic area. Do u think if i have another surgery I can reverse the bladder problem??? I also have issues with my body leaning to the left? I feel so alone!!! Ann

Q: Hi My father has Leg pain and cannot sit down due to pain but can walk, lie down without pain. Pain is neuropathic. His MRI showed straightening of lumbar lordosis . Mid sagittal images revealed altered signal intensity of L3/4-L5/S1 with intervertebral disc suggesting degeneration. Extension of disc material beyond the posterior margins of the vertebral bodies were noted at the above levels in association with hypertrophy of ligaments and consequent narrowing of the adjacent spinal canal. These findings marked at L5/S1 level with near obliteration of the spinal canal. Disc prolapse at L3/4 level lateralization more to the right side while at L5/S1 level their is both central and leftward lateralization. Ada

Q: I had an MRI that stated: Large focal right C5-6 lateral recess and neuroforaminal disc herniation, with associated spinal stenosis. I have been suffering with this and the associated pain for 3 months.The radiologist said I should have surgery, but the specialists do not seem very concerned. Any comments or suggestions. I have also started to develop changes in my bladder function. Chris

Q: hi, i have low back pain, my doctor sent me to take xraysand it reads like this. Studies demonstrate rightward splinting of moderate degree. this is most prominently flexed at the L4-5 area. sagital alignment is normal. disc spaces are preserved. no gross fractures nor infiltrative change is seen. significant degenerative changes. Sara

Q: I will try to keep this short & sour...I am a 41 yr old female 12 yrs post anterior L5-S1 discectomy fusion with titanium stabilization Dx of initial double pars defect L5, spondylolisthesis, complete rupture of L5 & DDD... part of an FDA study program for the BMP2...no repercussions other than a locked up left SI joint 6 wks post surgery during therapy which could only be remedied by injection. 6 wks ago onset of LBP similar to the SI joint pain I experienced before...self diagnosed & therapeutic measures later to no avail, went to diff Dr (self pay now) & was sent to therapy. They requested MRI which revealed 6-7mm spondylolisthesis with interbody fusion, L4-L5 mild spinal stenosis resulting from broad-based posterior disc bulge with posterior central annulus tear, moderately severe right & left neural foraminal narrowing in conjunction with facet arthropathy. There is signifigant L5-S1 foraminal narrowing. At L3-L4 posterior & somewhat rightward disc bulging with bilateral foraminal narrowing.L4-L5 moderately severe biforaminal narrowing. I have significant left leg weakness, numbness, pins & needles & surging burning constant pain all the way into my calf. Have also recently experienced bowel problems. Do I have a non-operative option? Nicole

Q: disc herniations at c4,c5 and c6 resulting in moderate stenosis and foraminal impingement. left foraminal herniation at l4-5. central herniation at L5-s1 disc bulge at L3-4 with extension of disc into the neuroforamen bilaterally. scoliosis, posterior bulge at L2-3. can you tell me what this means and will i always be in pain. should i get surgery ? Linda

Comment: Hi, i have focal loss space height at C5/6 level with vertebral body lipping, i have pain same time in the neck, Thank You very much, George

Q: I need a complete definition of disk herniation at L5-S1,Please help me about it. I will await your EMAIL,THANK YOU, Amin

Q: I`m 54 years ,I got a sever back pain and was asked to do a MRI scan was diagnosed of initial stages of slip disk. I was given western medication and was advised on physiotherapy exercises . Ever since I started to do them I`ve been having a continues dull pain around my lower body. The Dr advised even if I miss my medication not to miss my exercises. You are the only one who has advised on your site, that exercise may not help slip disk condition. Please give me a solution and an explanation. Samanthi

Q: I have been in severe pain for almost 2 years. I have questions regarding my MRI.1. Multiple level degenerative changes. What does that mean? 2. L2-L3 Moderate disc narrowing. There is a 2mm dorsal dis bulge. Where is this located? 3. L3-L4 2mm broad based disc bulge with narrowing. 4. L4-L5 Moderate disc narrowing with dehydration and 5mm cetral and left disc herniation. A left dorsalateral component is present. Central spinal canal stenosis. Moderate severe left and moderate right L4 foraminal narrowing associated and findings suggest possible involvement of the L5 nerve-root in the lateral recess.I'm trying to disect thr MRI report. I hope you cam gie me a better understanding on what is going on with my painful back!Thank you so much!!! Denise

Q: Recently my wife is having a chronic pain in her lower back and right leg specially. We have done MRI report and shown to several Neurologist and Orthopedic doctors. Some are saying that you can do surgery and some are saying that it can be treated with physical exercise with result of 60 to 70% and then you have to take care with weight lifting etc. The exact comments shown in MRI is below : L4-5 shows central & right paracentral & sub articular herniation with extrusion, compresses the thecal sac, impinges upon the traversing right nerve root, mildly compromising right exiting nerve root & neural foramina. Central spinal canal shows moderate compression with partial myelographic block at this level. MRI shows herniation of L4-5 disc with extrusion & impingement of traversing & exiting right side root & compression of spinal canal as described.I would be glad if you can explain what exactly it is and does she need surgery? I would wait for your kind reply. Thanks & Regards, Vishal

Q: Hi I was diagnosed with a bulging L4-L5 disc with significant impingement on the L5 nerve root. I did not know I had a back problem because I originally went to the Doc with a lot of pressure in my lower left abdomen and buttocks area thinking it was possibly colon related. I have since had an CT scan and found out about the disc problem. My question is Will the nerve impingement make my legs fall asleep frequently and always have an urge to have a bowel movement (a lot of pressure) when I don`t have to. I occasionally get a bruising like uncomfortable feeling in my inside thighs groin area that can last up to an hour or so. I have tried Traction and do light workouts to keep my muscles in my back strong. The traction has made me feel a lot worse. Unfortunately I have to wait 4 months now for an MRI and the meds my Doc is prescribing me Apo-Indomethacin 50 mg 3x per day for pain and inflammation absolutely does nothing for me but rot my gut. He refuses to prescribe anything else due to his over prescribing habits back in the day. I can only stand for short periods of time before my legs get pins and needles and same goes for sitting but my legs go completely asleep in sitting position if longer than 10 minutes. I`m just concerned about my groin discomfort and leg weakness that has recently hit me. I have entered my CT results for you to better understand the situation. Thank you for your help. CT TEST RESULTSCT Lumbar SPINE: Volumetric study with multidetector helical CT of the lumbar spine was obtained without contrast. The patient presented with parasthesia along the left femoral nerve. This study was carried out to rule out left sided sciatica. This study extended from T11 to the lower portion of the sacrum. There is a transitional vertebra at the lumbosacral junctionwhich shows pseudoarticutation of its lateral masses with the sacrum. For the purposes of this examination the technologist indicated this to represent L5. Utilizing this nomenclature then vertebra are intact and disc interspaces are well maintained. There is hyperlordosis with apex at L4 L5 with a curvature of 79 degrees. The facet joints are unremarkable. Close attention to spinal canal and spinal foramina reveals no significant abnormalities at T11 T12 through L3 L4. At L4 L5, however, there is mild left, para central posterior disc bulge which effaces the lateral recess and causes significant impingement of the exiting L5 nerve root on the left. The spinal foramina areunremarkable.At L5 S1, no significant abnormalities are present.IMPRESSION: Left paracentral posterior disc bulge of approximately 5 mm with a broad base of 13 nun which causes impingement of the exiting L5 nerve root. No other significant findings are detected. Dan

Q: Hi there, I was diagnosed with the thorasic DDD, I am 51 years old. What should I do about it, Regards, Sheri


Q: I have numbness in my left had at index finger and third finger and extreme amount of pain in my left arm and hand and my neck and upper back. this has been going on for over a month here is the results of my mri. i have a consultation next week with a surgeon. just wondering what i can expect and what exactly this report is telling me. Clinical Indication: radiculopathy,left Findings: Sagittal images show normal AP alignment of the cervical spine with mild desiccation and height loss of the cervical discs. Cervical cord signal is normal. At the C2-C3 level, no significant abnormalities are appreciated. At C3-C4,there is a minimal noncompressive diffuse disc bulge with mild uncovertebral hypertrophy asymmetric on the right. At the C4-C5 level, there is a minimal diffuse disc bulge causing mild effacement of ventral subarachnoid space with no posterior cord compression. Hypertrophic changes cause borderline narrowing of the right C5 foramen. At the C5-C6 level, there is a minimal broad-based central disc protrusion causing mild effacement of ventral subarachnoid space with no posterior cord compression. There is mild central stenosis at this level with AP canal dimension of 9 mm. At the C6-C7 level, there is borderline mild narrowing of the left C7 foramen. The right C7 foramen is patent. At the C7-T1 level, no significant abnormalities are appreciated. There is no evidence of neck mass or adenopathy on this examination. MRI cervical spine impression: Multilevel cervical degenerative disc disease with no evidence of cord compression. There is mild central stenosis at C5-C6. Other level specific details are discussed above. Phil

Q: TECHNICAL INFORMATION: Sagittal and axial magnetic resonance images of thecervical spine were obtained. INTERPRETATION: The cervical spinal cord demonstrates normal signalintensity. The cerebellar tonsils end above the foramen magnum. Nointradural lesions.Bone marrow and paraspinal structures: Unremarkable. C2-3: Normal. C3-4: There is a mild to moderate broad based left paracentral discprotrusion. This protruding disc is contacting and flattening the left anterolateral aspect of the cervical cord to a mild degree at this level.The neuroforamina are well maintained. C4-5: Normal. C5-6: Normal. C6-7: Normal. C7-T1: Normal. Impression 1. Eccentric broad-based left paracentral disc protrusion at C3-C4 causing mild deformity of the cervical spinal cord.2. No other significant abnormalities. I am wondering what this all means... My dr called me and told me that I have to see a surgeon, and I'm not allowed to lift anything or push anything cause I could become paralyzed.. Is this really that serious??? I have a lot of radiating, stabbing pain in my left shoulder and going down my arm, when I turn my head to the left, I get zaps that rip up , the left side of my neck, when I turn my head to the right, I get zaps that rip down the left side of my neck, I can not put my chin to my chest with out pain that shoots down my neck and into my arm. The pain that radiates into my arm is pretty much constant and I am in a lot of pain. My drs have me on Percosett for the pain.. I have an allergy to Cordizone and Prednizone, so I am unable to be treated by them... Can you please answer my question and help me understand this before I see the surgeon... Thanks a lot!!! In pain, Tori

Q: I had an MRI done on my Lumbar Spine. The Conus Medullaris terminates by the level L1-L2. There is mild degenerative disc remodeling at each of hte lumbar levels. There are mild Modic type I edematous endplate changes surrounding the L5-S1 disc. Correlation with the axial images demonstrates minimal diffuse disc buldge with mild facet hypertrophy at L1-L2. L2-L3 also demonstrates a very mild diffuse disc bulge with mild facet hypertrophic remodeling; the axial images also suggest a very small left lateral recess disc protrusion at this level, causing minimal mass effect upon the thecal sac. at L3-4 there is a mild diffusse disc bulge, along with a small and very broad based left lateral recess and neural foraminal disc protrusion. The bulge causes minimal mass effect upon the thecal sac, although the left lateral protrusion is causing some deformity of the thecal sac, moderate left foraminal stenosis, and with potential impingement upon both the left L3 and possibly left L4 nerve roots. L4-L5 demonstrates a minimal diffuse disc bulge and mild bilateral facet hypertrophy. There is a small left foraminal/extraforaminal disc protrusion at this level, causing additional foraminal compromise and potential impingement upon the left L4 nerve root lateral to the foramen. At L5-S1, there is a moderate caliber, asymmetric left sided disc bulge, along with bilateral facet hypertrophy that is also left side more prominent than right. These cause mild central canal stenosis, but the asymmetric bulge and facet hypertrophy are causing significant stenosis of the left lateral recess and left neural foramen. Along with potential impingement upon the left L5 nerve root transversing the foramen there also appears to be some mass effect upon the origin of the left S1 nerve root. Can you please help explain this. Thanks so much. Carolyn

Q: Hi, I've really enjoyed the information on your site. It seems too good to be true though. Are you really just one guy? A real person? And is everything you are saying really true? Sorry to be so blunt in my questions, it's just there are so many negative horror stories out there on the internet about disc herniations. Thanks, Mike

Q: 20 months L5 /S1 Microdiscektomy.Since then ongoing weakness and numbness left post aspect of thigh down to lat aspect of foot 2 small toes ,unable to walk heel painful now nagging pain posterior aspect of the thigh. Please advise and help. It is unbearable. Yowsen

Q: I have 3 herniated disc L-4,L-5,and L-5-S1, with right hip pain that runs down my right leg, sometimes I can't even do anything. Now i am 17 weeks pregnant and I wonder if I can have a natural birth or a c-section, which on would be a healthier choice for me in the end,that way I still can do somethings with my child and not be in a wheel chair for the rest of my life. Jackie

Q: Hi, Thanks for all the great info! Could you decipher my MRI results for me? 1. there is multilevel degenerative disc disease most severe at c6-7 where there is focal kyphosis and right and left paracentral disc extrusions, the right sided extrusion much larger than the left and severely enroaching upon the right lateral recess of the canal and the origin of the right c7 foramen. smaller left paracentral extrusion contributes to the overall severe canal stenosis, and moderately encroaches on the left lateral recess. 2. there is also degenerative disk disease at c5-c6 with disk osteophyte complex eccentric to the right. there is multilevel canal stenosis worst at c6-c7 but significant at c3-c4 through c5-c6 as well and affecting the right lateral recess at c7-t1. uncinate and facet spurring results in multilevel foraminal encroachment most severe on the right at c5-c6 effect is not nearly as severe as the encroachment related to right sided disk extrusion at c6-c7. Collin

Q: I am 34 years old, work a full time job & have a 5 year old. I was recently diagnosed with spina bifida occulta, L1 L2 small osteophyte right, L-2/L-3 small right sided disc bulge, L-3/L-4 mild thickening of ligamentum Flavum, L-4 L-5 concentric disc bulge, superimposed left lateral disc protrusion, mild flattening of the thecal sac, ligamentum flavum hypertrophy and L-5 S-1 concentric disc bulge with ligamentum levum hypertrophy, flattening of the thecal sac, mild bilateral formal narrowing. I am in horrible pain. Is this all normal & what are my best options? Annie

Q: i'm suffering from slip disc and i'm really worried for my future as i'm not still married... so just wanted to know that is slip disc very bad. what will it harm my future life is all aspects i'm asking u... i'm very tense whats the permanent cure of it...hoping for your reply..thanking u, Mansi

Q: I have following problems from last 3 months - 1. Both legs lack sensation, unbalanced and I am not able to walk properly 2. Frequent Urination. 3. constipation - at times My MRI report results are - T2 intramedullary hyperintense signal noted in the cord at D3, D4 & D5 -D/D myelitis. - Screening of cervical & lumbar spine show unremarkable cord with disc bulge/herniation at C3-C4 & L4-L5 & L5-S1. Please suggest, is this a big concern, would I be able to back to normal again? what should I do? Manish

Comment: I am having pain on my back,right groin, R lateral thigh,R lateral knee going to lateral side of my hill for 3 years.My MRI shows L2-L3 2mm right neural foraminal disc protrusion.L3-L4 left neural foraminal and far lateral disc protrusion 3 mm in AP diameter.This appear to be in contact with the left L3 nerve root.the AP diameter of thecal sac 1.1 cm L4-L52-3mm posterior disc bulge greater in AP diameter with in left neural foramen with a left neural foraminal focus of annular fissure.mild spinal stenosis with Ap diameter of cana measuring 8-9 mm. Zina

Q: I am 32 years old and have already had surgery on my lower back due to degeneration and herniated discs (L4 and L5) I just had another MRI done and it's very technical and am not sure I totally understand the results. I have degeneration all throughout my spine, but what makes me nervous is the result that says at C4/C5 there is a small generalized disc bulge that partially obliterates the anterior CSF space. Neural foramen are patent. At C5/C6, generalized disc bulge contacts the ventral thecal sac. Uncovertebral and facet hypertrophy combine to result in mild right neural foraminal narrowing. And what is osteochondrosis? Adam

Q: I have suffered with some kind of back pain for years now. Seen Dr after Dr but no diagnosis or clear path for any recovery. Yesterday, within a minute of getting up from laying on the couch and walking to the kitchen area, suddenly my complete right side of my back between my armpit and hip area felt an electronic type slow charge up numbing sensation hard to explain lasting maybe 10 seconds. I was afraid I was having a stroke because 6 months ago I had a TIA and was in ER. Any ideas as to what this could have been? Thanks in advance!!! Gary

Q: I am presently suffering from a herniated disc and a pinched nerve. I did 23 sessions of decompression am taking pain killers and am still in pain. What do you suggest? What would make me feel better and pain free? Sue

Q: i have constant pain, on pain killers all day hydrochodon w/ ibuprofen which helps, but makes me nauseous, and i stopped taking neurontin 300 mg which does nothing. mri done says 1. degenerative disc disease, osteochondrosis, osteoarthritis, 2. small tear periferal fibers of the anuulus fibrosis L5-S1 level. 3. no evidence of herniated nucleus pulposus. i am going to a neurosurgeon feb 10 2011. i am 30 years old. aren't i too young for this? Yolanda

Q: The following is Findings and Impression from a recent MRI.FINDINGS: Conus Medullaris: No enlargement, masses or signal abnormality. Vertebral Column: There are findings consistent with hemangiomas and discogenic bony changes. L1-L2: Nor evidence of disc degeneration or herniation. There is no evidence of canal or foraminal stenosis. L2-L3: Minimal bulging disc. Without evidence of disc herniation, central spinal stenosis or neural foraminal stenosis. L3-L4: Mild facet joint degenerative changes. Without evidence of disc herniation, central spinal stenosis or neural foraminal stenosis. L4-L5: Desiccation of disc material. Mild diffuse bulging disc. This results in mild ventral compression of the thecal sac. Moderate facet joint degenerative changes are present at this level. Borderline concentric spinal stenosis, but without evidence of disc herniation, significant lateral recess stenosis, or neural foraminal stenosis. L5-S1: There is a small to moderate broad-based disc herniation eccentric to the right. This disc herniation abuts the ventral aspect of the right S1 nerve root sleeve within the spinal canal. Without encroachment of the L5-S1 lumbar neural foramen. IMPRESSION: *Small to moderate broad-based disc herniation eccentric to the right at the L5-S1 level. This disc herniation abuts the ventral aspect of the right S1 nerve root sleeve, as detailed. *Mild degenerative bulging disc L4-L5 level. This in conjuction with facet joint degenerative changes results in borderline concentric spinal stenosis, as detailed. Help! What does this mean other than OUCH! Korena

Q: I've had a microdisectomy for a small lumber herniated disc, L5-S1 and 9 weeks post op, twisted getting out of bed sick to my stomach, old familiar ache was back a few days later and then the sickness turned into a very bad cold with lots of sneezing and terrible coughing (felt burning in the lower spine and off to the hip area again so disc for sure is reherniated. Is it possible for me to heal myself but by doing what? Please tell me your program is lots of work you do at home and not hours upon hours of trips to chiro or physio since I still have a full time job to do. Shelley

Comment: Hi,Firstly, I'd like to congratulate you on what I deem the MOST comprehensive spinal herniation site I've ever come across. And thank you for producing it.I've had a huge back problem since the age of 11 (I'm 30 this year) and it makes my life a living hell.My current GP and previous ones are not interested in advising or offering any help, indeed all they want to do is sign me off work for a month at a time till it eases! I'm not interested in time off work, I work for myself so if I don't work, I don't eat. Anyway, having visited them numerous times, I'd given up and find myself repeatedly trawling the net trying to find some guidance. After nearly 19 years of dark, horrid pain and suffering you have given me some hope. Hope that I can find some relief, some comfort, some normality!Thank you so much for the effort you have gone through to collate this invaluable information and guidance.Matt

Q: I have been experiencing neck and shoulder pain due to injuries sustained during military training (combativies). After receiving a MRI, the doctor reviewed the results and informed me that surgery is possibly in my future. The results of my MRI is as follows: c2-4:levels are unremarkable. c4-5:small central protrusion seen indenting the thecal sac. c5-6:left lateral herniation/extrusion giving leftside cord flattening and left foraminal stenosis. c6-7: minial bulge/protrusion with spondylosis I plan on getting a second opinion! Please explain the above results at your soonest and what is your recommendation/opinion based on the MRI findings. Tom

Q: Started with left sciatic pain and went away, few days later went to right side all the way down through knee. Finally had MRI and have been referred to Neurosurgeon. Of course waiting to get in. MRI results say L4/5 mild disk space narrowing. Posterior herniation of disk seen to left w/annular tear extending into neuroforamen. Mild right sided foraminal encroachment. Reactive sclerosis in facet joints. L5/S1 Posterior herniation of disk seen more to left with formainal encroachment. Reactive schlerosis in facet joints. Fluid is sen in both fact joints. Impression: herniated disks with facet irritation or inflammation L4/5 and L5/S1 with predominant left side foraminal encroachment. So what do you presume is next? I asked regular doc if PT and they said they assume Neuro will say surgery?? Any thoughts on it. Thanks, Julie

Q: there are some mild facet joint hypertrophy/arthropathy at L4-5 and L5-S1, left greater than right with tiny facet effusion at L4-5 on the left. Similarly ,tiny facet effusion is seen at L3-4? What does this mean everything else is normal. Shawn

Q: Hi. I have been experiencing severe pain in my lower back. This pain is coupled with adhoc shooting pains down my buttocks and front legs. Predominantly on the RHS but every now and then on the left. Unfortunately I had no medical aid so checked myself in for an X RAY without a referring GP. (much to the radiologists horror). Whilst I now have a report I have no idea what this means:'paravertebral joints showed mild tropism of L5/S1 level, but no spondylolysis or listhesis is seen'...based on the same do I have a slipped disc? any further insight you could offer would be great. thanks Jackie

Q: I had an MRI done on my neck 12/23/10 and it was determined that I have mild posterior bulging in C4-5 area,1.5 to 2.0 mm, and that because its so mild I can't be having the pains in my shoulder an tingling down arm. I want to know why I have the pains then. The Dr. I was seeing acts as though its not possible.It has been 7yrs. Is it possible for me to feel these pains or is it psychosomatic? Nanette

Q: Interested in your opinion of next steps based upon this MRI... CLINICAL HISTORY: Low back pain with posterior leg pain. COMPARISON: CT abdomen --and pelvis 02/23/2006. PROCEDURE: Sagittal T1, T2, STIR; axial T1 and T2 weighted images of the lumbar spine acquired on a 1.5 Tesla magnet. FINDINGS: Minimal leftward curvature of the lumbar spine centered at the level of L4. T1/T2 hyperintense signal abnormality within the body of T12, likely hemangioma. NO evidence of fracture. Normal cord contour and signal intensity. The conus terminates at the level of L1. The nerve roots of the cauda equina are normally distributed within the thecal sac. There is a small fibrolipoma of the filum terminale. L1/2-L2/3: No disc herniation, dural compression or neuroforaminal narrowing. L3/4: Minimal broad disc bulgIng lateralizing to the left. No significant dural compression. Mild ligamentum flavum and hypertrophy. Mild left neuroforaminal narrowing. L4/5: Minimal broad circumferential discogenic ostedphyte. mild ligamentum flavum and facet hypertrophy. No significant dural compression. Mild bilateral neuroforaminal narrowing. L5/S1: Small Right paracentral disc extrusion with cranial migration to the superior endplate of 31 is in contact with and posteriorly displacing the intraspinal right Sl nerve root raising the question of impingement. No significant dural compression or neuroforaminal narrowing. There is mild facet arthropathy. IMPRESSION: 1. Small right paracentral disc extrusion L5/81 is in contact with and posteriorly displacing the intraspinal right S1 nerve root raising the question of impingement. 2. Mild facet arthropathy lower lumbar spine contributes to mild bilateral neuroforaminal narrowing levels L3/4 and L4/5. Joseph

Q: about 4 months ago I was in a car accident and I found out I have a herniated disc. The MRI results state Broad based posterior with lateralization to the right side at C5-C6 level with some compromise to the neuroforamina to the right side, What does this mean exactly? Secondly 4 days ago I received an epidural steroid injection shot with still no relief. Should I not feel a little better by now? Jennifer

Q: I am a 51-year-old female with a history of back pain. It has become increasingly worse in the past few months. The pain is in my lower back and I experience the most difficulty when rising from a sitting position. I had an MRI 4 years ago when I had similar pain. Here is the impression of the MRI:1. At L4-5, there is a central and right paracentral disc extrusion or extruded disc fragment and this measures 9-10 mm in length x 5-6 mm in width. There is moderate spinal stenosis, as well as moderate to marked right lateral recess encroachment with probable impingement and displacement of the traversing right L5 nerve root. 2. At L5-S1, there is a 4-5 mm central and left paracentral disc herniation, which in combination with facet and ligamentum flavum hypertrophy, results in mild spinal stenosis. There is also left greater than right lateral recess encroachment and disc appears to touch but does not definitely displace the traversing S2 nerve roots. There is moderate to marked left and moderate right foraminal narrowing and possible impingement of the exiting L5 nerve roots in the neural foramina bilaterally. 3. Approximately 2-3 cm cystic lesion seen in the region of the left adnexa. This probably represents an ovarian cyst. (end of report) I would just for you to comment on these findings. Thanks, Joyce

Q: hi. i have had neck pain for about 5 months and is very up and down slight weakness in the arms. had a mri one month ago and it says small disc protrusions at c5/6 and c6/7 no evidence of neural compromise. the doctor sent me to a musculoskeletal doctor three months ago but the pain is worse now in the same spot, i don't know what to do and its getting to much now, please any advice would be great. thanks dave.

Q: Hi. I hope you can offer some suggestions. I'm 65 years old quite active. I swim a lot, lift weights and do other forms of aerobic exercise. I love to play gold but that seems to set me back the most. Would a cortisone shot help me. I appreciate your help.I have the following moderate levoscoliosis of the lumbosacral spine with moderate to severe disc space narrowing at the L3-L4 and L5-S12. No anterior retrolisthesis. At L2-L3 the is broad based posterior disc bulge with mild central canal stenosis and mild narrowing of the neuroforaminal. L1-L2 circumferential disc bulge with mild central canal stenosis and narrowing of the neuroforaminal with mild compression of he exiting nerve roots. L3-L4 broad based posterior disc bulge with mild central canal stenosis and mild narrowing of the neuroforaminal without nerve root compression. L4-L5 broad based protruding herniated disc which is contributing to moderate canal stenosis and moderate narrowing of the the left neuroforaminal with mild to moderate compression of the left exiting nerve root. Mild narrowing of the right neuroforaminal without nerve root damage. L5-S1 broad based posterior herniated disc which is contributing to moderate central canal stenosis and moderate narrowing of the neuroforaminal of the exiting nerve root. Mike

Q: Can you answer ASAP? I hate to ask, but this feels like an emergency. Or it does since I got the MRI and the calls from the docs. QUESTION: Is this cauda equina syndrome? Do I need surgery within 48 hours? (My doc did not say this, but he pressed me to decide immediately on a surgeon.) Here is the MRI REPORT (of 1/13/11): "FINDINGS: Comparison is made to the previous MRI from 5/14/07. At the disc space level of L5-S1, there has been increase in the focal extrusion since the previous examination. The focal extrusion now migrates superiorly and inferiorly and now measures 2.5 cm S-to-1. Previously, the focal extrusion measured 10 mm S-to-1. Focal extrusion now measures 5 mm A-to-P and 15 mm R-to-L while previously it measured 5 mm A-to-P and 7 mm R-to-L. Focal extrusion causes moderate central canal stenosis. Focal extrusion compresses on the conus. Conus ends at the superior aspect of L2. Focal extrusion does not enter the foramina. At the disc space level of T12-L1, again is identified the small extrusion measuring about 3 X 3 mm unchanged and of questionable clinical significance. No other ventral or dorsal extradural defects are identified. Normal signal intensity and height to the vertebral bodies. Straightened lumbar lordosis seen with muscle spasm. The perivertebral soft tissues are unremarkable.IMPRESSION: At the disc space level of L1-2, previously identified focal extrusion seen in May 2007 has increased in size, 5mm A to P, 15 mm R-to-L and 25 mm S-to-1,and causes moderate central canal stenosis and compresses on the conus."WHY I BECAME SO CONCERNED IS: The radiologist who read the MRI films and wrote this report called my primary care doctor before sending his report to suggest that this was very serious and he thought surgery should take place soon. My doctor then called me at home with this comment from the Radiologist, and added his own belief that surgery should take place soon. He, my doc, also believes I should have a neurosurgeon and suggested one, but I have been through this dance before. (This means I have obviously had herniated discs before and attained complete relief from epidural injections and physical therapy.) So I have previously thought orthopaedic docs are just as good. NOW FOR THE PAIN PART: Previous pain with disc problems was nothing compared to this! ("this" occurred on Sunday,1/09/11)! It seemed to happen suddenly (how could it?) when I just took a normal step and my whole back froze. At first I could not move in any direction. A couple of days later (after some heavy-duty muscle relaxants) I could take tiny steps and support my weight with a cane. I also did not urinate for almost 24 hours and thought I would burst. Finally the muscle relaxants released it, I think. I have had problems with urinary retention for some time, but there is nothing wrong with my bladder or kidney, both have been tested. I was able to get an epidural injection the day after the catastrophic breakdown, but it has not helped this time, and it has now had time to help. Pain is in groin, L. hip (front and back of it), severe low back pain, and pain down both legs,more on the thighs but some down the backs of legs much worse on the L. The L. leg is becoming numb at times, especially the foot. Also have pain in the buttocks. Do you have any suggestions as to a course of action, and how soon must I implement it? Oh, I forgot to say, the only real concern to me here is the compression on the conus! Or should I be worried about anything else? The Radiologist implied that the stenosis is worse than it sounds in his report. So maybe I should be worried about that, too? I have avoided surgery for years, but maybe I cannot any longer.If you can answer any of these questions or provide advice, I will be so very, very grateful!! Thank you!!--Margaret

Q: hi, i explain my story. my mother have a backache, mri shows she had a slipped disk in l4,l5, she is so worried, what is your best recommendation for her? nastaran

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