Pain Concern

results of MRI scan 27th August

any advice L4/5 grade 1 degenerative spondylolisthesis, fairly narrowing foramen at L3/4 level with severe disc collapse as a result of degeneration. she has dynamic commpression of the L3 nerve root placed on waiting list for W/L for right L2/3 foraminal epidural as diagnostic test.

what does all this mean in laymans terms. Had MRI scan on 27th August 2013.. got a letter to get it repeated on 13 September 2013


5 Replies

Hello BOB here

Ok with regard to the multiple condition I may be able to help in a very restricted way, if you are not happy with this, and I would prefer you to contact NHS CHOICES on the internet they can introduce you to a self help list that will explain all of this in laymans terms


Your partner has a disc degeneration of the lumber region of the spine, the disk numbers or on the lower spine and coded L for (Lumber) think of a tree and the cutting down of it in the lower part of the trunk (lumber jack) This has caused the actual disc to collapse upon itself and they have a narrowing of the disc and the nerve, bone disk area where the nerve and bone are located. There is also possibly damage to the disk, bone of the spine, that could crumble in this case in the lumber region Their is a service area of the spine where the nerve passes down the inside of the spine. Between spine and disk to the lower spine area, this fluid travels between Brain area and lumber region of the spine

The problem with regard to this is the disc and spine bone is dynamic, that means there is movement between several or two surfaces depending on the patient, this movement has not settled and this is proving a problem and it is pressing on the nerve, this is like a tower of childrens bricks and is moving backward and forward etc causing more pain as it rubs on the nerve root and disk. Possible fluid has leaked from the spine cavity and this will also cause irritation and pain. They will possibly take fluid from this area of the spine, this liquid is pink an colour and is quite thick and is taken for many other tests, so this procedure with given risks is a well known procedure. this fluid lubricates the disks of the spine

Now with the epidural, this test consists of a needle inserted with a fluid into the lower spine in this case, generally a trace of this fluid wil be tracked and they will take photographs of the effected area and possible MRI scan. This will show up the damage to disk and lumber area, this will also show how much this joint area is moving, as you have said a MRI had been taken in August.regarding this area of the spine.

Possibly what they may do here is a fusion of the effected lumber regions, their are differing procedures that they can perform that is why they are now taking additional pictures, scans. They will discuss that possibly some time after the tests., although the idea will be to stabilize the movements of the effected areas and joint

One thing I need now to explain to you. What I have given you here is my own interpretation of you partners condition.

This should not be taken as a GP or specialists explanation, I am not a doctor. Further explanations will be given either by the hospital or GP.Further treatments may and will be required regarding this condition a explanation will be given by specialists in the NHS environment.

You and your partner should take advice from medical practicioners associated with this case

My position here is to give support to chronic pain sufferers.

All the very best and if you need to come back for a chat after further tests please do so, support will be given to help in possible pain problems associated with above. GOOD LUCK with tests on the 13/09/13



Thanks Bob for your input regarding my MRI. I shall take your advice and spk with my Dr. I have a wee cocktail of daily medication :Naproxen 500mg x2, Gabapentin 500mg x6, Co-Codamol 30/500 x8, Amitriptyline 175mg bedtime, Napedifine ? forget, Furosemide 20mg x1, Omeprazole 20mg. I cannot imagine what my pain level would be if I had no medication...and yet even with all that "cocktail" I still have awful pain, it takes my breath away sometimes..I walk with a hunch and have a forward gait. I had thought when I got my left hip replacement 3yrs ago (when I was 47) I would have faired better. It is one of the best things I did was my hip replacement. I don't remember what its like to be pain free. I am very fortunate I have a wonder GP. I seem to be nattering away here, I just wanted to say a "quick thank you" lol


I have only just joined this forum and posted a comment e few minutes ago. I suffer with disc wear also. I found that Voltarol was the only medication that substantialy reduced the nerve swelling. I was also prescribed Co Codamol, Tramadol and dozens of other pain killers over the years and none worked. I now get most relief from simple Solpadine Plus,which can be bought over the pharmacy counter. It cannot be used for long periods of time but maybe when the pain is at its worst? Good luck and I hope this helps.


I usually recommend a sports physio, but I fear there is more going on than just wear and tear and any increased activity may worsen the spine until its stabilised.

You could try simple things like hot pads, to ease the muscles in the lumbar area. It may bring short spells of pain releif and it may relax the musles. Unfortunately it may also irritate the nerves, so its a case of try and see. Good supporting footwear and trying to keep the body symetrical when walking.

You're lucky you have an attentive GP. Don't be scared to ask anything, even the things you might think silly and not worth botherkng him about. If left unaddressed, these will prey on your mind.

If they offer ops, ask about why the failures failed, and what the success % ratio is. Also how many times that particular surgeon has done the op.


Hi bealovely.....

Hey how's you.

It's good to see that your mri scan report is similar to mine....on which with the lumber disc's I also have the same problem with T7/8/9 and C2/3/4/5/6...

Am on similar meds to you, just in the last year or so, I was put on MST, on which I find that it works, well on good days, but hey bad days then No...

Take care



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