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Hi, I am needing assistance, The following info my current MRI reports, and SPECT scan. Can anyone help me understand all this terminology? Can anyone identify the diagnosis?

6/2004 - 1st MRI:
FINDINGS: The spinal alignment is normal. THere is partial disc desiccation at all levels. At most there is minimal disc protrsion at 2-3, L3-4, L4-5. There is no significant canal or neural foraminal narrowing. Mild Facet degenerative changes in the lower lumbar spine.
OPINION: Mininal disc bulging at several levels, Otherwise unremarkable.

11/2004 - 2nd MRI:
FINDINGS: The spinal alignment is normal and the bone marrow signal is normal. There is a disc bulge at L4-5 greatest left lateral where there is some narrowing of the inferior aspect of the neural foramen.
Very minimal disc bulgeL3-4 without obvious neural effect. At most there are mild degenerative changes about the posterior elements greatest in the lower lumbar spine. There is also some ligamentum flavum hypertrophy at L4-5 which minimally narrows the posterolateral aspects of the canal.
OPINION: Small left lateral disc protrusion left L4-5 with some narrowing of the neural foramen.
Also at L4-5 there is a mild bony hypertrophy about the posterior elements and legamentum flavum hypertrophy which at most minimally narrows the posterolateral aspect of the canal.
There is also mild disc bulging L3-4 without obvious neural effect.

1/2005 SPECT Scan:
26.7mCI Tc-99m MDP Administered.
SPECT images demonstrate subtle asymmetrically increased uptake within the posterior elements at approximately L5-S1 to the right of midline. MRI shows mild degenerative facet changes at this level which may account for the activity. No sufficiently increased uptake seen to suggest acute fracture.
IMPRESSION: Subtle mildly increased uptake within the posterior elements at L5-S1. The activity is most compatible with mild degenerative facet changes noted on MRI of 11/2004. No bone marrow edema identified in this location on the recent MRI and therefore stress fracture or other acute bony abnormality is considered unlikely.

My problem...I am unable to sit for more than 15 minutes without the pain increasing in the buttocks. My legs now go numb while sitting. During aquatic therapy, I could not feel the sensation of the water on my left leg. Cannot sleep, without strong medications. Occassionally pain shoots from lower back down my leg to my foot. My physician states there is nothing showing in the MRI's that would creat this problem. I am told I have "tight muscles". Obviously I am not a physician, however, I do know the pain I am feeling is not normal...Can someone help? I need explainations & can't seem to get them from my physician.

Thank you in advance for your assistance. You are very much appreciated.
Recently I experience a bulge at l3/l4 (small) and small or not, the pain was significant. This was due to a number of reasons. The obvious being the pressure on the s1 nerve root. The associated muscle spasm also caused significant pain. It may be that while you dont have the physiological signs to suggest or explain your level of pain that you are experiencing significant muscle spasm at various levels of your spine - Has your gp/specialist prescribed a muscle relaxant of and form, Tension is the body (stiffness also puts pressure on the facet joints and cam cause pain.

When I intially hurrt my back (1990) the scans were accoding to those who interpret them "not remarkable" or at the very least showed a "small" disc bulge at l4/5 & l5/s1 - So insignificant that eventually I had a laminectomy and double fusion at these levels to repair the damage - When they eventually responded to requets for help (third surgeon mind you) they operated and found the problem to be far more serious than first envisaged. I went through 12 months of therapy etc with various specialists and gp's & PT's trelling me it wasnt serious enough to operate.

Hope this is of some help

Losy :bouncing:

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