New MRI results

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cogito
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Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 932
   Posted 5/14/2012 3:37 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi All,

I had a new set of MRIs done Friday and saw the orthopedic doctor today.... finally we have a clear image of a pathology that explains my upper left back pain. My MRI from two years ago was very blurry and both it and the one I had in 07, showed classic symptoms of an aging scoli spine, but not a specific pathology to explain the main location of my pain.

But in this image, there was a very severe compression of the spinal column on the left at C4-C5, C5-C6. I was assuming that it was narrowed neuroforamen that caused my pain. But apparently it is where the affected nerves begin to separate from the column itself.

The scoli curve plus bone spurs are apparently responsible for the compression. The doctor said it is operable, but wants to consult with some specialists in the particular pathology and then get back to me.

I'm far from eager to pursue surgery, but at least I feel relieved that the MRI shows more clearly than any I've had so far what is causing my pain.
C4-T4 Scoliosis (disk degeneration, stenosis, narrowed neuroforamen, bone spurs), RT hip and SI joint damage from car accident. Also, pectus excavatum, supraventricular tacycardia and mitral valve prolapse syndrome.
Current meds: Ultram ER 300mg & 2-3x 10mg Hydrocodone daily. Oxycodone 10mg for BT. .25-.5mg xanax as needed for sleep, Verapamil 240mg SR (for tachycardia).

Snowbunny21
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Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 3557
   Posted 5/14/2012 4:11 PM (GMT -6)   
I would actually get an opinion from a Board Certified Neurosurgeon. They are the most knowlegeable on the spine and cervical area. I would never enter into such a major surgery without a second opinion and knowing it was recommended by someone who truly specializes in this area. I was blessed that the Ortho who I started off with 11 years ago, after he saw my MRI, said that he was more of a "back" guy and sent me to a Neurosurgeon. His ego didn't get in the way! LOL

As I'm sure you have read on here, surgery should be mainly done to fix the mechanical issue and take the pressure of the nerves/cord. I had to have all 3 of mine within two weeks of seeing the MRI as I was losing so much feeling in my arm/hands and dropping things.

I am very thankful to not have anymore nerve pain, but after 3 (two level) fusions....with the last one being anterior and posterior....I have a lot of residual muscle and scar tissue pain.

So, I would just make sure to follow through on making an actual appt. to meet with a Neuro and have them go over your results.

Have you already tried traction, PT, injections and the like? Sorry for not remembering if you wrote this lately....
SB and "the pup who snores loudly" 
 
ACDF C5-C7, (no hardware), with autograft bone Nov. 2001
(reabsorption of bone 2 years later...still lost in body..expect to burp it out at anytime..haha")) 
ACDF with hardware, allograft bone Nov. 2005 
Anterior and Posterior CDF, allograft bone with BMP, removal of old hardware, use of titanium plates, rods, screws, & kitchen sink (lol) Oct 2006
 
 

grandmaroses
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Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 1355
   Posted 5/14/2012 4:14 PM (GMT -6)   
Like you said at least the MRI was clear, and you now know for sure. I imagine you be needing surgery, and when that times comes I hope you will be able to comfort you in some small way. In the meantime while you are waiting for the surgeons to consult try to stay as healthy as possible
Take care
Rose



Insulin Dependant Diabetic, Fibromyalgia, Gerd, IBS, Sleep Apnea, COPD, Spondylolistesis, Diabetic Neuropathy, Fatty Liver, High Cholesterol

cogito
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 932
   Posted 5/14/2012 4:31 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi,

I've gone through all the options: Chiro, PT, injections, etc.. Given that the bone is compressing the spinal column, it is no surprise that these methods haven't helped.

The ortho will be showing my MRI to 2 neuros this week. If I start getting inclined to have surgery, I surely will get other opinions.
C4-T4 Scoliosis (disk degeneration, stenosis, narrowed neuroforamen, bone spurs), RT hip and SI joint damage from car accident. Also, pectus excavatum, supraventricular tacycardia and mitral valve prolapse syndrome.
Current meds: Ultram ER 300mg & 2-3x 10mg Hydrocodone daily. Oxycodone 10mg for BT. .25-.5mg xanax as needed for sleep, Verapamil 240mg SR (for tachycardia).

Snowbunny21
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 3557
   Posted 5/14/2012 4:50 PM (GMT -6)   
I was thinking you had gone through all of those options before so thanks for sharing...

Are you going to get to meet with the Neuro yourself?

It sounds like surgery is going to be the next step....Do you have the symptoms of loss of feeling, numbness and have they done any EMG nerve tests?

It's such a bummer for those of us with chronic pain like this as in the "outside world"...LOL....90% of all spine issues resolve themselves or with conservative treatment...

So at least if you have the surgery you know you have done everything you possibly can beforehand....

And sorry...one more question....what is your most severe type of pain? Nerve? (sharp....burning) or Muscular? (Throbbing....deep....aching)
SB and "the pup who snores loudly" 
 
ACDF C5-C7, (no hardware), with autograft bone Nov. 2001
(reabsorption of bone 2 years later...still lost in body..expect to burp it out at anytime..haha")) 
ACDF with hardware, allograft bone Nov. 2005 
Anterior and Posterior CDF, allograft bone with BMP, removal of old hardware, use of titanium plates, rods, screws, & kitchen sink (lol) Oct 2006
 
 

momtofourangels
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 2265
   Posted 5/14/2012 5:05 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Cogito It's good to hear that you now know what is causing your pain. Im sorry that there's probably surgery down the road for you. Take care of yourself and keep us updated on what happens during the next few days to weeks.

hugs
Loretta
Dx: osteoarthritis, bursitis in left hip, Osteoarthrits in right hip, compression fracture in thoracic spine due to falling on frozen ground March 2001 , ddd, spinal stenosis, bone spurs, osteoarthritis in spine, osteoarthritis in both knees
Meds: Fentanyl patch, oxycodone, otc: BenGay, Tylenol Arthritis on occasion

Chartreux
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 9664
   Posted 5/14/2012 6:45 PM (GMT -6)   
It's very good you know what's the cause and that you finally got a good mri done,
but you do have a lot to consider...and I will send you many many prayers and well
wishes...thinking of you, hun....
**********************************************
* So many dx's I could write a book* "It would be nice if we could use the edit button in real life"...
********>^..^<********>^..^<*******

cogito
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 932
   Posted 5/14/2012 7:25 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi,

Snowbunny21, for now, I'm not meeting with the Neuro. The Ortho wanted to have a few Neuros at the MRI. In this case, I'm not worried about an MD who is eager to perform surgery. The Ortho is at a university teaching hospital and though I can't say for certain in his case, I've been told by another MD at the same facility that she receives a salary vs. getting paid per procedure.

I don't have any loss of motor function or numbness/tingling aside from my two outermost fingers on my left hand. As for type of pain, burning/stabbing in the upper-mid back, burning in the arm, deep ache/cramping closer to neck and shoulder.

So, I presume the nerve issue causes most, then other muscles respond by spasm.

One thing I don't understand, and need to ask the ortho about is why he would need to remove disks (2) if the main problem is bone pressing on the spine. Why not just remove bone? If anyone knows, please share. But I'll ask him when he calls me after the consult.
C4-T4 Scoliosis (disk degeneration, stenosis, narrowed neuroforamen, bone spurs), RT hip and SI joint damage from car accident. Also, pectus excavatum, supraventricular tacycardia and mitral valve prolapse syndrome.
Current meds: Ultram ER 300mg & 2-3x 10mg Hydrocodone daily. Oxycodone 10mg for BT. .25-.5mg xanax as needed for sleep, Verapamil 240mg SR (for tachycardia).
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