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MRI - t1 to C1

driftwoodddriftwood Posts: 81
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:47 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
Hey all I got an MRI today and basically have degeneration from t1 to c1 expect a couple.

3 of the disc as lightly bulging and one is torn and leaking fluid. I asked how bad it was from one to 10, 10being that I am screwed. He said as far as that (bugling etc) goes its a 2. SO am alittle freaked out.

1) if its degenerative, will it continue this way. Being torn and bulging will it always bulg out?
2.) How long to fix?
3.) Does it always continue to degenerate.


  • HI Driftwood. I had bulging disks at c3 and c4 after my car accident. My latest MRI show no more bulging, a year later.

    I really didn't do any treatment specifically for this area since it was asymptomatic. But I guess in my case some time and general PT did the trick.

    What did they say about the torn disk? That is what would worry me. And what is bothering you.

    Did you talk to your doctor yet or did you get this info from the technician?
  • this is all new to me, so am not sure what to think about the torn disc, and the implications of the torn disc...

    thanks for the response.
  • Have you seen your doctor yet?
  • I went to a specialist and he explained all that. The regular GP should be getting the results today and will wit to see what he says.

    I just forgot to ask about the tear etc etc.
  • What are you feeling? SOunds like the specialist isn't concerned which is probably good. If you aren't getting any pain or other symptoms it might just be a wait and watch thing.
  • well I have been having symptoms for 6months that started with an injury. The first place a started was a Neurosurgeon that said I had DDD but it was not the cause of my issues. The guy today seemed to say most likely as the mri shows the tear.
  • I also have high uric acid in blood that he thinks could contributing..
  • uhhhh - so my regular doctor called me and said that everything looks great. NO issues. WTF!!!!!
  • I love it when they say that. So which disk has the tear and what are your symptoms. Remember they only consider it a problem if your test matches your symptoms. Otherwise you look for something else as the cause.
  • Neck pain all the way up to the base of skull. My traps lock up and rhomboids. And very stiff neck. The trigger point Injection helped. Till then I was not able to turn my neck to one side.
    stiffness all on back.
    some shoulder pain/burn,
    Buzzing in feet
    not pins and needles but like that, like on or two sharp pains like someone is poking me with a pin.
    Neck and back spasms and most recently leg pain.
    NO real tingling or numbness
    Burning at base of feet.
  • Have they considered lumbar issues? I don't know much about that but the sharp pains in your feet sound important. I had pain like that in my arm from a pinched nerve.

    Sounds like you need a really good neurologist to diagnose all of your issues since they seem to be throughout your spine.

    Again, same old advice, but keep a pain log. Something may jump out to the doctor.
  • Couple of things you could do here to see if any of your symptoms are related to that level. Look at a dermatone map provided you know the level that the disc is torn in and see if any of those pain pathways look similar. The other thing you could look at is the video here on spine-health, called cervical radiculopathy. As far as what your describing from your mri's none of that should be causing you any leg issues. By chance did they take a flexion/extension x-ray. Those films are best to see if there is any instability, now if there is could be a whole different ball game. But if you look at the dermatone map you will see which nerves correspond to which levels of the body. Typically it will only get the legs when there is cord compressions going on or in the cases of myelopathy(cord compression). But that should give you a start. Also with a buldging disc typically conservative treatment should help that. Things such as physical therapy, message therapy, injections and the list goes on but your doctors should work a treatment plan for you.

    Did your primary doctor understand you have limited range of motion in your neck and suggest any types of treatment options?
  • that's just it. I did PT for 3months I really didn't have range of motion back till the trigger point injection.

    When I got the MRI they gave me a copy and I thought it would not hurt while I wait for the radiologist to send the info back to the regular doc.

    he said the results were "great, no issues there." So I tol him that this other guy I saw said that I had a tear degeneration in the discs etc adn 3 bugling, even showed me and I could see.

    He said he didn't care what the other guy said because this is what the Radiologist things.

    And there is definitly no tear.

    So now there is even disagreement on the MRI????? That was supposed to be a clear piciture.
  • I'm really confused now. Who told you that there was a tear? Did you read that on the report or was that something that the technician told you? Or was that what the neurologist said after reviewing the films?

    If it was the technician I would be careful. They are not supposed to talk to you about results. If the neurologist said there was a tear he should have given you a treatment plan for the disk and he should also be looking at the rest of your problems.

    You really need to get back to the neurologist for a full workup. Keeping a pain log is really important since you seem to have problems all over the place.
  • yeah me too. I took the mri to a "Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation" doc while I was waiting on the reults from the mri. He was able to pull up the results while I was there as well.

    SO he is the one that told me that I had the bugling discs etc etc. NOt sure if he was reading the results from the Radiologist or if it was from his interpretation.

    The at the end of the day my regular doc called me and said that everything "looks great."

    NOt sure what is going on anymore.
  • Oh now I can almost make out that picture -- lol get the pun?? I would call either office tomorrow and get a copy of the written report. My guess is that the phys med doc did his own reading.

    No matter what the $64,000 question is what did the phys med doc say to do? Does he say to continue PT or more injections? Or does he think you need surgery? I'm confused about how he can say that about your MRI and then send you off without an idea about treatment.

    No disrespect to your GP but if you are seeing a specialist I wouldn't go backward unless you had other issues with the specialist.

    Hope this helps. Between us I will say that I hate it when you leave the office feeling confused.
  • I get the picture now... HA - another pun

    I told the GP what the other specialist said and he said he didnt really care cause he is going with what the radiologist said. IE, no probs.

    Next week I see a neurologist and find out if he falls in camp one or camp 2. I have the pic here with me and I see to small bulge.. maybe they aint bulgy enough. ugh.

    I was hoping this MRI woudl clear it up, but noooooooo.

    I guess are bugles and slight protusions normal then? questiong between herniation and bulge.

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