Can any one help?

Hi. I was wondering if any one could explain my mri scan results. I've been housebound for over year due to severe pain in my neck, thoracic , & lower spine . Also both knees are affected. Things are progressively getting worse to the point where I'm in so much pain can't sleep more than 2-3 hours at a time . I have difficulty walking 2-3 meters & so I am confined to one room. I am female , 48 yrs old.

My blood results came back as normal.

MY GP relayed my mri results to me over the phone & only after googling the word haemangioma I realised that it's a benign bone tumour. Could someone please help to explain my results?

MRI Spine Cervical

Lumbar Spine

Slightly reduced lordosis despite position. Minute marginal osteophytes. Incidental schmorl's nodule involving inferior L1 end plate. Early lower lumbar spine facet joint arthrosis.

Normal lumbar discs. Central spinal canal, lateral recesses and exit foramina remain spacious. Normal conus terminalis.

Cervical Spine:

Normal vertebral alignment . Incidental small C6 haemangioma. Small areas of degenerative bone marrrow signal changes at T5 level.

Normal facet joints. Normal cervical discs. central spinal canal, and nerve root canals remain spacious. Normal appearance of cervical spinal cord and CCJ.

I have intense pain in the discs listed with problems. I'm mainly concerned about the bone tumour & the schmorl's nodule. Should my haemangioma be monitored. I haven't been told anything at all about this.

I'd be very gratetful to get an opinion on this.

16 Replies

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  • This is a helpful website for understanding the significance of haemangiomas. It doesn't sound as if it's anything to feel alarmed about.

    radiopaedia.org/articles/ve...

    And I think that calling a finding incidental means they don't think it is related to the presenting symptom so I wouldn't be too worried by the Schmorl's node either. A bit more information:

    Schmorl’s node is a common sign of spinal degeneration that is often included in the spectrum of spondylosis, although it has a distinct pathogenesis. A Schmorl’s node is a herniation of the intervertebral disc through the endplate in the vertebral body and is a frequent incidental finding. Schmorl’s nodes are usually asymptomatic; however, in the acute phase they can determine temporary back pain.

    Here is an article about you may find helpful about facet joint arthritis:

    spine-health.com/conditions...

  • Reading scan results is such a minefield & can be misinterpreted by those not qualified to read them. I'd make an appointment with your GP, say you don't understand a lot of it, he should put you at ease & be able to explain where you go from here, if it's necessary.

  • Good advice, but I think it helps to have some idea beforehand what some of the words mean, otherwise it's a lot to take in at one go.

  • I agree to some degree but some words used can have two meanings, in this instance the word 'haemangioma' has raised concern, it can also mean birthmark though I agree it is unlikely to be related in this instance. 'Schmorl's nodules' may not be of consequence either but we're not to know that for sure whereas her GP would. I was worried that Dr Google could do more harm than good whereas if she was to see her GP (or ask for a telephone consultation) he could explain it in words she could understand rather than medical terminology & put her at ease. Plus we're not radiologists or if we were it's not our place to translate results. Her GP should be able to write a letter of explanation & recommend if monitoring is required or if any further investigations are needed it's not easy for her to visit the surgery.

  • I certainly agree that a trip to the GP is essential!

  • I was just thinking at the very least her GP should be aware of how much pain she's in, how it's affecting her quality of life & question how has it been allowed to get this bad.

  • Sorry if we appear to be talking about you catukf, it's just we're concerned about you. Do let your GP know how things are for you & have been for a year now. Take good care.

  • That's okay nomoreheels , I don't mind. I spoke to my GP yesterday and asked what my results meant. She told me there was nothing to worry about & that she'd get another doctor to ring me to explain as she wasn't a specialist. I asked about the early lower joint arthrosis & whether that meant the early onset of osteoarthritis. She said she didn't think it had anything to do with that & then proceeded to use her phone to ask google. My doctor classes my mri results as incidental findings & unrelated to the extreme pain I'm feeling.

    I don't agree.

    I don't consider it normal to be in so much pain you can barely get to the bathroom or to dress yourself. I am unable to sit upright in a chair for more than 5 minutes as my feet turn purple. My doctor checked the pulse in my ankles & determined that I don't have a problem with my blood pressure. I'm only able to sleep now for 3-4 hours per night.

    I was in absolute despair after my doctors visit yesterday & so I decided to create the original post in the hope that someone would be able to tell me whether my results are normal. Whether the benign bone tumour in my neck needs to be monitored . Or if there's anything at all I can do to alleviate this pain, or if I can request to see anyone else regarding my results.

    I would like to add. That I am unable , shower or even brush my own hair anymore. I feel like i'm living in absolute squalor & pain & unable to do anything about it.

    With no answer as to what is going on.

    I'm still waiting for a call back from the doctor to put my mind at ease.

  • I'm so sorry, it's an awful position you're in. Is there nobody close who can help you, or could you speak with another GP at your Practice perhaps, that is if the other doesn't call back? It sounds as though you should at least have stronger pain relief, then maybe you could move a little better, even try to shower & wash your hair, I know I feel worse if I feel mucky. I do know that 'arthrosis' is OA so it does sound as if some of your pain can be related to that. Until my OA pain was adequately addressed it was blinkin painful so I would certainly push for a review of your pain relief. As a matter of interest have you been tested for rheumatoid factor, with your joints being so prevalent pain wise wondering it's that or as we've talked about, OA. Keep in touch & let us know how you're getting on. x

  • Hi. Thanks for your response. My doctor has upped my dosage of pregabilin. It isn't making any difference yet. I've been tested for rheumatoid factor,anti-dna etc & the results came back normal. I'm hoping that I'll get some relief soon from the pain killers. I'll definitely keep in touch & let you know how I'm doing. x

  • Thanks for the update & I hope the increase is helpful. Coincidently at my last Rheumy appointment the Registrar I saw suggested my GP prescribes pregabalin in addition to my other meds for OA, but I'm still waiting for the report so I've not started it yet. Sooooo..... has OA ever been discussed? When I was diagnosed with RD at 48, at my first appointment with my Consultant I was also informed I had cervical OA & more recently lumbar & other joints. Worth questioning if it's never been considered maybe? You don't say when you were tested for RF & anti-dna(?) but if it's not recently I'd ask your GP to examine you again & ask if she'd do a full blood test plus ESR, CRP 7 even anti-CCP (is that what you were meaning?). Also, if anyone in your family has/had rheumatoid do mention that, it's thought it can be genetic. x

  • Am I missing something or is your GP dealing with your problems herself or have you been referred to a consultant? It does sound as if you are not being kept in the picture at all. It's also a bit alarming your GP doesn't seem to be able to know whether your arthrosis was a precursor to osteo arthritis. Sadly GP's don't get much training in any type of arthritis.

    If you haven't been referred to some sort of specialist put on your brave hat & insist that you are....you are a young woman & you really do deserve much better treatment than you are getting.

    I get so much info when I have an MRI I glaze over....I feel like saying "enough already" but smile politely instead...but at least I am in the picture.

    I really do hope you get some help very soon!

    AC

  • I haven't been referred to a consultant. My Gp has been dealing with this. She called me just now & said she'd spoken to the radiologist who performed my mri scan. He said the incidental findings were unrelated to the symptoms I had and that nothing needed to be monitored. I asked my GP what she thought was causing the pain & she replied that she didn't know. My main concern right now it the haemangioma. Do I just wait to see if it will grow & start causing neurological damage, then call my doctor back or should I get a second opinion?

    I feel as though I'm back to square one. With no explanation at all. I don't believe that my symptoms aren't related to the problem areas on my mri scans. I have no idea what to do now. I just know that being in this much pain is too much.

  • Is there another GP you can see in your practice? If not you should ask for a referral to get a second opinion.

    You really can't be expected to,suffer so much pain.....especially when your GP says she doesn't know what is causing it.

    Now is the time she should send you to someone who can at least control your pain......& maybe that person will have a fresh look at your test results & take a new approach to your symptoms.

    I do hope you manage to get some help very soon

    AC

  • Hi AgedCrone. Thank you for your reply. I have an appointment at the pain clinic to speak to a specialist at the end of this month. I'm really hoping he'll give me some answers . I'm also going to speak with the radiologist who performed my scans.. I would at least like to know what type of hemangioma I have and whether it's likely to grow & cause more pain. My GP tells me that it wont be monitored. But she couldn't offer an explanation as to why it wouldn't be. Everything I've read so far tells me they need to be observed for growth changes. I don't understand why it isn't being monitored.

    Also, I've read a lot about this subject since receiving my results & apparently the best way to understand how hemangionmas affect the body , whether it's pinching specific nerves or symptomatic is by giving patient a bone scan "and" an mri scan.

    I'll make sure to keep everyone updated about my progress after my appointment.

    Thanks to everyone for their input so far.

    Hopefully next time I'll have some good news to report.

  • You sound much more positive now catuk!

    It is a bit of a grind coming to terms with any sort of ailment, but bottom line we feel the pain & it's good to hear you are seeing a pain specialist & doing research on what you have been told.

    Good old American (I think) expression 'Knowledge is Power'!

    I'l look out for your next post!

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