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dablues (@dablues)

Double Vision & Spinal Stenosis

Spine Health | Last Active: Sep 17 2:57pm | Replies (22)

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@ dablues I also responded on your other post. This report indicates some multilevel issues, and loss of disc height at C5/C6 which is putting pressure on the facet joints and at that level they are causing arthritis and affecting the nerve roots causing foraminal stenosis or compression of nerve roots that exit the spine. The vertebrae get closer together when a disc looses height, and if there is already compression at the nerve roots, movements like twisting or side bending the neck might make that worse. I did not have arthritis around my nerve roots, and my disc lost 50 % of it's height. If I did side bending, it did put pressure on the nerve roots and send pain down my arm where it did not happen if I was straight. My MRI report described mild canal stenosis with a minimal indent of the spinal cord and it described neural foraminal narrowing on one side. That wasn't true. My surgeon told me the foramen was clear, and he didn't need to clean anything out of there during my surgery. You do have some backward slipping of C5 over C6 which I also had and your report states changes of the end plates at C5/C6. It mentions modic changes. I looked that up and it might indicate inflammation that can come from the inner disc material that gets extruded with a herniated disc, or from small cracks in the vertebrae that affect the bone. I also had what was considered mild spinal canal stenosis at C5/C6 and I had a lot of pain and symptoms. I lost about half of my muscle mass in my arms and shoulders. What can happen if no surgery is done for a collapsed disc and arthritic changes, is that the bones of the vertebrae can fuse themselves and that may not be in a good alignment, and you would still have the compression of the nerve roots. Make sure to ask your specialists what will happen if your spine condition is allowed to progress on it's own with no intervention.

You may want to see a spine specialist, and start looking now for a surgeon of your choosing. You'll probably need to wait for that appointment as you go through your other scheduled tests and I have heard of waiting 3 months to see a good surgeon for a first appointment, then waiting again to get on his surgical schedule could be a month or 2 or 3…. You don't need to wait to complete your current testing appointments and followup before scheduling to see a surgeon and likely it will be finished before an evaluation, and you'll feel more in control of things if the decision of which specialist is not left to chance. You can ask your primary care doctor for a recommendation, and it is good to get second opinions before you decide on surgery as there might be different recommendations offered, and you need to be completely confident with the surgeon you choose. I hope I'm not overwhelming you with information. For me, I need to understand in detail why and how it all works. Here are some links that explain the imaging. You may want to compare your imaging to what you see here.
This video (about an hour) explains a lot about cervical spine problems and treatments and shows and explains MRI images.

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Replies to "@ dablues I also responded on your other post. This report indicates some multilevel issues, and..."

Thank you for the reply. Will look into this!