Hi, Im new to the forum and found this site to be very informative. I had an MRI 2011 and finding that I have Degenerative Disc Disease, Degenerative Joint Disease, compressed right nerve root, scoliosis. Now I am experiencing sciatica with only pain management since MRI. I am very apprehensive to getting surgery unless I can't walk due to numerous reasons. The past 10 months I have been experiencing alot of neck pain and tinglyness going up the right side of my head and down my right arm. I have also been experiencing some cervico-genic headaches. (about 2 months ago one woke me up in the middle of the night and was so severe nothing gave me relief except to sit in a reclining position.) Had an MRI 7-2-2013 and findings are:
Vertebral body height and alignment is maintained. Reversal of cervical lordosis is present with apex at C5-6. The cervical cord demonstrates normal signal intensity and morphology. The cervicomedullary juntion is normal. Mucosal thickening is present bilateral maxillary antra and sphenoid sinus.
C3-4 disc height is maintained with a tiny central disc protrusion which minimally effaces the anterior subarachnoid space without cord effacement.
C4-5 disc height is maintained with minor disc bulging and left uncinate hypertrophy.
C5-6 moderate loss in disc height is present with prominent marrow defenerative endplate signal posteriorly. a small fatty strom-type hemangioma is present in the C5 vertebbral body. A broad based posterior disc protrusion is accentuated by 1-2mm of retrolisthesis of C5 with respect to C6. the posterior disc margin narrows the anterior subarachnoid space and mildly deforms the ventral cervical cord without cord signal change resulting in mild to moderate cervical canal stenosis. Moderate left greater than right neuroforaminal narrowing is secondary to broad based disc protrusion and uncinate hypertrophy.
C6-7 moderate loss in disc height is present with prominent marrow defenerative endplate signal. A broad based disc protrusion/osteophyte complex narrows the anterior subarachnoid space and mildly effaces the ventral cervical cord without cord signal change. The above combines with uncinate hypertrophy to result in moderate left and mild right forminal narrowing.
Conclusion; Multilevel discogenic and spondylotic changes inclyding disc protrusion/osteophyte complexes worst at c5-6 and c6-7 levels with mild deformity of the ventral vervical cord at the former and mild effacement of the later level without cord signal change. Foraminal stenosis at the above two levels without clearly evident abutment of the exiting nerve roots.
My doctor does not think that I would be a candidate for surgery due to the multi-level and my ROM being greatly affected. Sad part is I am only 40 yrs old and have had NO trauma, only genetics. I am extremely apprehensive of surgery but thinking that if I was to move the wrong I could possibly become a quadriplegic... Any opinions or input would greatly appreciated, especially on my cervical considering that is the more dangerous area affected. Thanks in advance and look forward to responses.