I am 47 and recently had an MRI done because of constant paint in lower back, hip & legs.
The results are as follows. Can you put it in simple terms as to what is wrong and what can be done to help me.
There is normal alignment of the lumbar spine. Disc spaces are well maintained. No marrow signal abnormality. The tip of the conus medullaris ends normally at the inferior L1 level. Transaxial scans at L1-L2 demonstrates a small focal left lateral disc protrusion which is impinging the exiting left L1 nerve root. This disc protrusion measures approximately 7mm in tranverse dimension and 4mm in sagittal dimension. This would explain the CT appearance. No central disc herniation or spinal stenosis. The right L1 nerve root exit its neural foramen without compromise. The facet joints are unremarkable. No abnormality at L2-L3. At L3-L4, there is transverse left-sided posterior annular tear. These can be symptomatic. No focal disc herniation or spinal senosis. The L3 nerve roots exit the neural foramins without compromise. The facet joints are unremarkable.
At L4-L5, there is a left-sided annular tear. There is a tiny left lateral disc protrusion which comes into contact with the exiting left L4 nerve root. The right L4 nerve root exit its neural foramen without compromise. The facet joints are unremarkable.
At L5-S1, there is no focal disc herniation or spinal stenosis. The L5 nerve roots exit the neural foramins without compromise. the facet joints are unremarkable.
Small focal left lateral disc protrusion at L-L2 which is impinging the exiting left L1 nerve root. This accounts for the CT findings. Note is also made of left-sided annular tears at L3-L4 and L4-L5. These can be symptomatic. In addition, there is a tiny left lateral disc protrusion at L4-L5 which comes into contact with the exiting left L4 nerve root
You have a L1 nerve root compression. Meaning the nerve exiting the spine is pinched, L1 has collapsed on L2. L3/L4, L4/L5 has annular tears (tears in the disc), they can be very painful. Later they may herniate and cause even further problems. At L4 this is already happening comming in contact with the nerve root. Your foramen seems to be OK also, they are the holes made from stacking the vertibrae creating a hole for the nerve to exit. Is all your pain left side related?
The good news is there is no spinal stenosis, stenosis is the (narrowing of), so your spinal cord is OK. The facet joints are OK, they are the joints between the vertibrea.
Surgery may be in order to relieve your pain. Today they have minimally invasive surgeries with great results. I don't think you need a fusion but it can come to that. Are you seeing a neurosurgeon yet? You could try spinal decompression at a Chiro's office but if it don't help in couple of weeks, stop it won't.
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