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Dr. Andrew Rynne
Dr. Andrew Rynne

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What do my MRI test results indicate?

Answered by
Dr. Olsi Taka


Practicing since :2004

Answered : 3650 Questions

Posted on Thu, 25 Aug 2016 in Brain and Spine
Question: Lumbar Mri with and without contrast - what are broad based left central disc protrusion at T12-L1, diffuse and eccentric bulging disc osteophyte complex at T11-12, greater to the right? Also, 2.2 cm gastric diverticulum.

Brain Mri - 4 small non enhancing oval and rounded foci of white matterT2 signal hyper intensity overall morphology and distribution is non specific.
Answered by Dr. Olsi Taka 2 hours later
Brief Answer:
Read below

Detailed Answer:
I read your question carefully and I understand your concern.

The first part of the report speaks of some changes of the thoracic spine. In a couple of levels the cartilage discs found between your vertebrae are displaced, bulging outside of the vertebral bodies. This may cause no symptoms at all, but if it compresses a structure such as a nerve root may cause pain. At one level there are osteophytes, which are bony spurs formed over the years due to arthritis and wear and tear on the spine. These again may cause no symptoms or cause pain when they compress nerve structures. When there is a disc bulge and osteophytes at the same level the risk of compression and pain is naturally higher. So interpretation of that part of the report depends on your symptoms if they do not correspond to your symptoms may be simply a common coincidental finding about which nothing is to be done.

The gastric diverticulum is simply an outpouching of the stomach wall, a sort of sac. Most times it is asymptomatic, but at times depending on size and form may cause sensation of fullness, abdominal discomfort, nausea or pain. At 2.2 cm I would think it shouldn't be causing any symptoms or need any procedure.

As for the brain MRI part, as the report says there are four small dots in your white matter. They are not specific meaning they are not indicative of an active disease, not indicative of MS. As to why they originated is not possible to pinpoint, may be the remnant of something old like an infection or lack of oxygen during birth, may be due to changes of small blood vessels with age, it's like an old scar, you can say there was a wound but not what caused it. The important thing to you should be that they cause no symptoms, represent no risk for the future and need no treatment. Frustrating as it may seem it is a common finding, the older we get the higher the probability of finding such non specific foci, on average it is said one for each decade of life, so you're exactly there.

I remain at your disposal for other questions.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
Follow up: Dr. Olsi Taka 5 hours later
Thank you! I was sent for brain and thirscic mri because my symptoms "dont match" the small bulging discs that I have at C3-4 and C6-7. I had a fusion at C5-6 from an injury in 2011. My symotims are numbness right arm below the elbow, right and sometimes left foot numbness, tripping, falling, excessive fatigue, vision blurriness and double vision, slurred speech, memory problems, weakness in right hand, dizzines, comstipation or severe diarrhea, and difficulty swallowing. I also had a 6X greater than normal on a Lupus blood testbthatbthey said could be a false positive?! I dont know what is going on but don't feel rigt and not sure what questions toask my neurologist?
Answered by Dr. Olsi Taka 8 hours later
Brief Answer:
Read below.

Detailed Answer:
Sorry for writing back a little late.

I am afraid that this MRI doesn’t do much to explain your complaints, although after all that should be seen as a good thing, there is no significant lesion of the brain or the spinal cord.

As for what to discuss with your neurologist, since the MRI excludes central nervous system causes, you should discuss whether he finds anything on physical exam to indicate a peripheral nervous system disorder, something to indicate any need for tests like nerve conduction studies and electromyography.

If that is not the case you should discuss with him whether the symptoms could be due to a systemic disorder such as a connective tissue disease given that lupus test you mention, whether a referral to a rheumatologist would be advisable on that regard.

I would also discuss the necessity of using Amrix if you still use it, I do not usually prescribe it for more than 2 weeks as it has side effects like confusion, clumsiness, mental depression. Actually the same goes for gabapentin, usually used for neuropathic pain, but that doesn’t seem to be your main issue, so why risk similar side effects. Baclofen may have such side effects as well so if you are currently using the three drugs you mentioned at the same time side effects must be taken into account.

I hope to have been of help

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar

The User accepted the expert's answer

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