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I don't really understand any of this. This is the notes that the doctor wrote after the test...:confused::(

2006 MRI cerv spine w/o contrast

Findings: Has a small central focal posterior disc extension at C5-6 that minimally impinges upon the thecal sac and may possibly impinge upon the spinal cord. There is mild loss of normal cervical lordosis, which is nonspecific and which may be chronic or related to spasm or positioning. Slight decrease in disc height and disc signal is present at C4-5 and C5-6
There is no evidence for expansion of the cervical spinal cord or central spinal stenosis. The neural foramen appear patent.
IMPRESSION: Small central focal disc herniation at C5-6 with questionable minimal impingement.

2010 disabilty order x-rays:

Two views are provided. Loss of normal lordotic curvature with disc space narrowing at the C5-6 level with anterior and posterior osteophytes. This is not, but to a lesser extent, at the C4-5 level. If discogenic disease is a strong clinical consideration,correlation with MRI may be helpful for further evaluation. No evidence of acute fracture or prevertebral soft tissue edema.

IMPRESSION: Degenerative disc disease as described above. Close followup is recommended.

There are five non- rib-bearing lumbar-type vertebrae. Vertebral alignment is anatomic without evidence of subluxation or fracture. Surrounding soft tissues are unremarkable. No significant degenerative changes are appreciated. Lumbarization of the S1 vertebral body suspected.


I have been in alot of pain since 2004 and was diagnose w/ chronic fibromalgia 2007 I think and was put on tons of meds nothing help the pain or symptoms. Stop seeing my family doc because nothing was helping and applied for disabilty. Having alot of numbness and tingling in arms and fingers having a hard time walking lower back is killing me when I put my right foot down to walk I have awful pain in lower back, stinging and pinching up my leg, pain in arms across my back and up my neck. Can not bend over at all without causing intense pain somedays I can't even move my neck I really would like to know what kind of doctor I need to see that deals with this some people say go to a neurologist and other say rheumatologist. I would like to know which one might be better. Thanks for any help you can give.
just given the overall MRI findings here esp having to do with that c 5-6 actually impacting for certain that thecal area which is what is also known as the "dura"(on the other side of the thecal sac) which contains the actual CSF fluid that is what keeps that cord and the brain bathed in something simply 'fluid' to keep it healthy and not dried out, it can be impacted easily when you simply have any type of either disc issue or even the osteophytes which are bone spurs that can block any ebb and flow of the needed CSF in any normal way TO that area of impact on your cord. it esp, needs to be relieved before it actually creates and even larger impact upon your cord? the mere symtpoms you are currently dispalying kind of tell their own story as well here as to what is possibly even generating them in you?

tho i am not too certain exactly what that lumbar finding is about, the lower torso symptoms if that cord is being actually directly impacted in certain ways CAN actually be at least somewhat responsible for feeling leg symptoms as well? it all really depends more upon impact of cord, and any other possible areas where the c spine is also being impacted by like stenosis that will actually if not now, eventually impinge the nerve roots where the impingement is located? just what exact fingers or arm symptoms are you feeling right now. are your legs feeling more 'hyperactive or what is called hyper reflexic? did your referring doc who sent you for that MRI actually do any type of neuro eval on you that included tapping the area under that knee cap to see how 'brisk" your actual lower leg reflexes were? how did that go? slight bounce out or brisker than normal? that ONE test really can tell ALOT.

the more specific you can be with your symptoms that much better we can simply help you figure this out.

i would actually immdiately try and seek out a really good neurosurgeon and do NOT settle for only a mere neurologist here. your findings simply indicate THAT need for that level of real expertise that neurologists only simply do not actually have? this may actually require a surgical intervention of some type in order to simply get that potential contact OFF that cord BEFORE it creates a more permanent impact for you here.

seeing that NS will also include a really in depth more hands on type of real eval of your body and its reactions to certain things/stimuli they just 'do" to it to see how your reactions simply are as well as looking at what you TELL them as your symptoms and the MRI all kind of come together to give that NS the best more clearer picture of what this particular finding truely means for you right now.

but do NOT settle for any neurologist since this type of situation found in you is way over any neuros head. you DO need a good neurosurgeon or an actual special type of accredited spinal surgeon at the very least. you just need to find out HIS or her overall opinion of your films too that any mere interpretting rad may have not seen certain things that ANY actual; neurosurgeon would simply have much much more experience and working hands on knowledge of. but seek out that referral from your primary asap if your ins requires actual referrals? you need someone woith that huge level of neuro knowledge to actually fully define your symptoms and that MRI as well right now. good luck and do please keep me posted, marcia
To add to what Marcia said, see a "spine specialist" whether it be an orthopedic surgeon or neurosurgeon. Most neurologist don't do anything with spines....just the brain.

You could see a rheumatologist for monitoring until such time as you need surgery but more than likely, you will be referred to a pain management specialist to keep you as comfortable as possible until you need surgery.

I had both thecal sac and cord impingement in my neck at 4 levels and was compressed down to half thickness when I was finally operated on and I had one doc tell to wait even longer so you aren't in danger with just a the pressure and minimal touching of the cord. In fact, I have that again even after a fusion and the doc won't ouch it until it get much worse as it means taking the fusion apart and redoing everything.

You are in the "pain stage" but not the "danger stage" when they worry about paralysis. Spine surgery is not done to relieve pain but to stop destruction of the nerves or compression of the cord where the loss of blood flow is imminent. If spinal nerves or the cord lose their blood flow, you are instantly paralyzed in that nerve or from the level of the cord compression on down. But you will know if that is happening...lots of symptoms. And an MRI will have words such as "severe compression" or "severe foraminal stenosis" or with the cord, they can actually measure the width and if it gets down to 8mms or less, you are in danger and looking at surgery.

So find a spine surgeon you like as it may take years to get to where anything can be done.

But right now, your tests don't look too bad. Painful but not bad. That unfortunately is the problem with spines. Lots of pain and little they can do about it.

good luck...............Jenny





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