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Spine and Back Health

MRI Interpretation



Having to deal with the "loss of communication" between the VA facility and an outside Radiology Center, can someone put the following findings/impressions of my MRI into something i can understand? FINDINGS: Minimal straightening of the normal lumbar alignment. L1-L2, L2-L3 minimal disc desiccation; L3-L4 minimal disc desiccation, minimal disc bulging, minimal degenerative changes in the endplates and facets. Minimal narrowing of the neural foramina; L4-L5 spondylotic endplate degenerative changes. Disc desiccation. Diffuse disc bulging with broad based disc herniation extending greataer towards the right lateral aspect and causing decreased AP and transverse dimensions of the canal and virtual obliteration of the neural foramina; L5-S1 Disc desiccation. Degenerative changes in the endplates and facets. IMPRESSION: Marked degenerative changes L4-L5 with large broad-based disc herniation, greater right lateral, and with spinal stenosis at this level as a result of the disc herniation and degenerative bony changes. I am a 47 year old female, 17 years postmenopausal (hysterectomy) with no HRT. Bone density test performed within a few days of the mri put my fracture risk at 5 times greater. Thanks for any information!


Thank you for visiting NetWellness. On this site, NetWellness experts try to answer general questions about health. Only the health professional who ordered the tests should interpret the results. As far as the "communication" issue, I'm not sure what you mean. It would usually be up to the physician who ordered the test to follow through with the patient. I'm not sure the radiology center would have any role beyond sending a report to the ordering physician. Other than that there's not much to communicate about, normally.

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Response by:

David J Hart, MD David J Hart, MD
Associate Professor of Neurosurgery
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University