What Can MRI Reveal About the Back Pain ?

Dr. Ramesh Sahjpaul, MD, MSc, FRCSC, Neurosurgeon, discusses what an MRI can reveal about the back.

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Dr. Ramesh Sahjpaul, MD, MSc, FRCSC, Neurosurgeon, discusses what an MRI can reveal about the back.
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Featuring Dr. Ramesh Sahjpaul, MD, MSc, FRCSC, Neurosurgeon

What Can MRI Reveal About the Back Pain ?
Duration: 1 minute, 11 seconds

Well, probably one of the most important things to recognize is that there is a normal aging of the spine.  

So over the years normal aging processes do take place in the discs and the joints in the spine and the tissues around the bones. And what that results in is what we call a degenerative cascade, and those changes are visible on an MRI scan.  

Well, MRI reports can sometimes be quite alarming, and that’s because they’re reflective of the normal wear and tear processes that occur in the spine with aging. And essentially everybody gets these changes on their MRI scan, and it’s important for patients to realize that they don’t need to be alarmed if their MRI report shows degenerative discs, bulging discs, bone spurs, and some degree of spinal stenosis.  

However, if the patient is experiencing symptoms such as nerve pain, numbness, tingling, weakness in the legs, and the MRI scan shows changes that correlate with those symptoms, then certainly in that situation surgery can be very helpful.  

Presenter: Dr. Ramesh Sahjpaul