MRI is assigned if the patient has signs of serious pathology of the spine.
A new portion of useful information from Ulyana Suprun. Together with a neurosurgeon, the acting Minister of health, shared information: what you need to know about MRI, reports Rus.Media.
In Ukraine is a common practice to do an MRI when a patient is experiencing discomfort in the back. This is an important procedure, but often it is not justified. If you know more about why it is needed, in some cases, an MRI to do and when to avoid — you’ll be able to save more time, money and sometimes health.
When assigned to MRT
MRI is assigned if the patient has signs of serious pathology of the spine or pronounced neurological deficit, which is about 1-2% of all cases of back pain. To do this, the physician first must understand the clinical picture of the patient, the history of the development of the disease, and to determine the so-called “red flags” — symptoms of a serious problem of the spine.
Symptoms of spinal problems
• disturbance of sensation of the limbs;
• labot in the muscles, dysfunction of pelvic organs;
• appearance of pain at night;
• temperature rise;
• unmotivated weight loss;
• oncological diseases in anamnesis.
In other cases, it 98-99% of the people who go to the doctor with the problem of back pain, MRI is not assigned. Under international protocols of treatment begins with simple recommendations is the preservation of physical activity, if necessary, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications, special exercises that can be combined with massage or manual therapy.
After 2-4 weeks obligatorily re-examination. The direction of MRI, the patient receives when during re-examination the doctor found “red flags”, or the pain syndrome does not abate within 4-6 weeks. The doctor should explain to the patient what he expects from MRI, and the results will affect the treatment strategy.
It is very important that to submit to such examination can only be a specialist. No way it can’t be a personal initiative of the patient. However, if you’ve already done a shot like this, you had back pain, but you suddenly come to know about degenerative changes in the spine, do not panic. It is a natural process that is characteristic of humans as well as graying of hair, appearance of wrinkles. In most cases they do not cause pain in the back and is normal.
According to studies, degenerative changes in the lumbar spine occur in people even without pain in the back, moreover, they begin to show even at 20 years of age. Similar results were obtained during studies of the cervical spine. Protrusion of cervical intervertebral discs were detected in more than 85% of the study participants, despite the fact that they again had no neurological symptoms and pain. With age, the prevalence of degenerative changes increases.
In order to begin to heal, but just the presence of, say, the protrusion must also be identified clinical manifestations in which in addition to the patient’s complaints, also neurologic and orthopedic symptoms of certain diseases.
Be careful! Unreasonably expanded indications for MRI of the spine and incorrect interpretation of the obtained results can lead to the fact that I can start treatment “MRI” and not the real issue. As a consequence, the assignment is unnecessary, sometimes expensive drugs and procedures, sometimes even surgery.
As a patient, feel free to ask your physician and never take independent decision with this type of diagnosis.