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MRI results and epidural fibrosis?
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by Jim__0, Dec 31, 1998

  Just a few quick questions for you.  I had a laminectomy in 1995 at L4-L5.  After a recent injury, I had a new MRI completed.  The radiologist wrote the following: "This MRI study of the lumbar spine with and without intravenous contrast infusion reveals evidence of a previous laminectomy on the left at the L4-5 level with epidural fibrosis in the left lateral recess." First question: epidural fibrosis is scar tissue, right? And everyone gets this tissue as a part of the healing process? Couldn't the MRI tell if there is nerve impingement by this fibrosis (the radiologist never states this, just that it is there)? I'm just a little confused why even mention it if it's not involved.  Thank you in advance.
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Thanks for your question.  Epidural fibrosis indeed refers to the post-surgical
scarring/healing tissue, and is present to a greater or lesser degree in
every post-surgical site.  It is often possible to make a distinction
in the post-surgical site between the fibrosis tissue and the nerve roots
and associated dorsal root ganglia, however, if there is a moderate/severe
amount of scarring (or association with active inflammatory processes) this
distinction is more difficult to be made - the radiologist would have made
a comment on the report if the latter scenario were occurring.
I hope this information is helpful.  Best of luck.  Happy New Year.
This information is provided for general medical education purposes only.
Please consult your doctor regarding diagnostic and treatment options.





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