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syringomyelia? also, which vertebrae in my neck?

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
Hi, everyone. This is my first post.

A few months ago, I has a TIA (transient ischemic attack/small stroke), and ever since then, there's been a 'numb/tingly' feeling on the right side of my body, head to toe. On September 1, per my neurologist's order, I had an MRI of my cervical spine. A few hours later, the radiology department called me and said the radiologist wanted a second MRI done. Three days later, when I had the second MRI, I asked the MRI tech why the doctor needed it. She pointed to a section on my MRI and said 'This is called a syrinx.' It looked like its length ran from C2 to C4. However, on the copy I took home with me, it looks like it could be either C2 to C4 OR C2 to C7 OR C5 to C7. The reason for the uncertainty is because the copy the tech gave me is a multi-image copy of my MRI. I have yet to hear back from my radiologist regarding the second MRI. How can I tell *exactly* which vertebrae are involved, and does this mean I have syringomyelia?

Thank you.


  • Sorry no one has answered your post, but let me say welcome to spine-health.

    I have a syrinx in my cervical spine, and we are monitoring it closely every 6 months with new MRI studies. I have had a worsening of symptoms that may or may not be coming from the syrinx. Basically the treatment is wait and see. Often a syrinx is something that has been present since birth, and causes no ill effects. I am told that these are being diagnosed more and more because of the increase in MRI scanning. So try not to be too concerned over it until you speak with your doctors about it. A syrinx can be serious if it is growing. Basically it is a bulbous sac that fills with cerebrofluid. This can interrupt the signal that flows through your spinal cord.

    If the syrinx isn't causing a serious interruption of signal, there basically is no treatment. In the event it gets large enough to cause loss of function of extremities, the treatment is to put a shunt directly into the sac to drain the fluid out. That carries risks, as they would have to penetrate your spinal cord to do this.

    I read somewhere that 85% of syrinxes cause no problems, so there is no reason to worry unless your doctor feels this is the source of your symptoms. I wish you the best. I'm curious to hear what your doctor says about it. Please post with any other questions or if you have more info.

    Surviving chronic pain one day at a time, praying for a reprieve because living another 40 years like this doesn't sound too fun!
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