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MRI results, bulgings discs in 4 cervical vertebrae

Started by Amy-Louise Rodgers on 03/10/2017 11:30am

Can someone help me read my results? I am 23 years old, and have been suffering neck pain for well over 6-7 years after a car accident. I have seen numerous doctors and haven't been taken seriously. About a year ago I began having numbness in my right arm/hand that still was nit taken seriously. Finally pushed for a repeat MRI and these are my results. Side note, I am a nurse so understand the general just of it all but not regarding treatment options. I am in pretty severe pain all day, every day. Currently taking Neurontin 3x a day, an anti inflammatory 2x a day, muscle relaxer 4x a day. I've done physical therapy, chiropractor, massage, accupuncctyre, trigger point injections, and more with little to no relief.
Thanks!

C2-3: A 5 mm left paracentral posterior disc bulge causes mild to
moderate central stenosis and indents the anterior cervical spinal
cord. Minimal neuroforaminal narrowing is seen.
C3-4: A 3 mm broad-based posterior disc bulge causes effacement of
the anterior thecal space. Mild to moderate bilateral
neuroforaminal narrowing is seen. Uncovertebral and facet
hypertrophic degenerative changes contribute to neuroforaminal
narrowing.
C4-5: A 2.5 mm broad-based posterior disc bulge causes effacement
of the anterior thecal space. Mild to moderate bilateral
neuroforaminal narrowing is seen. Uncovertebral and facet
hypertrophic degenerative changes contribute to neuroforaminal
narrowing.
C5-6: A 3.5 mm broad-based disc osteophyte complex causes mild to
moderate central stenosis. Moderate bilateral, right greater than
left neuroforaminal narrowing is seen. Uncovertebral and facet
hypertrophic degenerative changes contribute to neuroforaminal
narrowing.
C6-7: Minimal degenerative changes are seen at this level.
C7-T1: Unremarkable.

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Hi Amy-Louise -

I am sorry for you that you are having these issues at such a young age. I am not a doctor but have recently finally had surgery on my C 5/6 and C6/7 so I'll give you my dime and a nickle.
I am a military retiree and have dealt with neck pain and stiffness and arm/shoulder pain in both shoulders for almost 10 years. I went to my ortho doc to look at my shoulder but he felt like it my issues were caused by something wrong with my neck, so he ordered an MRI.
Sure enough, the MRI showed severe nerve impingement and multiple bone spurs.
I am 5 weeks out from surgery and am doing fairly well. The numbness and weakness has been fixed by the surgery and I am over the soreness caused by the surgery itself. However, I am having other pain and burning now which is preventing me from going back to work.
The doc says that my new issues are being caused by the nerves repairing themselves and since mine were so 'flat', this process could become very uncomfortable. I can only sleep about two hours in a row before the spasms wake me in incredible pain. This was unexpected but doc says it is part of the healing process.
You are young enough that if you decide to have the surgery, your body will be strong in recovery. I would hate to know that, if I were you, you would have to be living with your current pain and issues for the rest of your life without at least trying to do something to fix it. Just read up on the procedure and have all of your questions answered UP FRONT. Don't let anything be a surprise to you. You should know what your treatment and recovery plan will be, almost as well as your doc.
Plan on taking it easy for a few months after your surgery - do not try to rush your recovery. Make sure that your employer will support you and is aware of how much time you will need post-op. Knowledge is power, Amy-Louise, so be smart about everything you decide to do.

Best of luck to you with whichever decision you make.
Sarge

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