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    What does an MRI scan of the cervical spine (upper neck) show?

    Posted by Ravi Sohal on Thu, May 14, 2009
      
      
      
      
      
      

    cervical spine mriMRI scans are frequently used to evaluate the structures of the cervical spine, also known as the upper neck. A variety of trends have increased the use of MRI in evaluating the spine - more sports activity, computer use, and we've remained much more active into our later years than previous generations.

    If you've injured your neck or have chronic neck pain, your doctor will probably first order an x-ray. After an x-ray, an MRI may be needed to evaluate the internal structures of the cervical spine. On your doctor's order for the MRI you might see:

    "r/o disc disease" -  this refers to the discs that act as shock absorbers between the vertebral bodies of the spine. They can be injured or "flatten" over time and bulge and press on nerve roots. These are the dark flat structures between the tall, somewhat square gray bones (the vertebral bodies) in the picture to the right.

    "r/o herniation"- this refers to a disc herniation. If the outer part of the disc tears, a jelly like substance can escape out (aka herniate) and cause radiating pain or weakness in the neck, shouder, arm or hand.

    "r/o stenosis" - this refers to narrowing of the spinal canal and openings for the nerve roots. Bulging discs and other degenerative changes of the spine can narrow the spinal canal, causing neck pain or weakness. In the picture you can see the spinal cord as the long light grey structure, just behind the vertebral bodies, surrounded by white fluid.

    (FYI - "r/o" is short for "rule out")

    An MRI of the cervical spine will evaluate:

    Bones

    A cervical spine MRI will include the cervical vertebral bodies, lamina, facets, spinous process and parts of the upper thoracic spine and lower brain. The cervical spine MRI can detect bone fractures, tumors, infection and evaluate post-surgical changes. An MRI can also determine the extent of degenerative changes (arthritis) and be used for pre-operative planning for spinal fusion.

    Discs

    Cervcial spine MRIs are very good at looking at the discs between your vertebral bodies. A cervical spine MRI can detect disc flattening, bulges, herniations, and infection (aka discitis).

    Spinal Canal and Neural Foramina

    Spinal nerves arise from spinal cord and leave the spinal canal through holes called the neural foramina. The canal and these exit points can be blocked and cause neck, shoulder, arm, hand pain or weakness.

    Cerebellum and Brain Stem

    Parts of the lower brain including the cerebellum are seen. Some cerebellar conditions such as Chiari malformations can present with neck pain. The brain stem is continuous with the upper cervical spinal cord though usually not a cause of issues with the cervical spine. In the picture the cerebellum is the cauliflower shaped structure and the brainstem is the tissue just in front of it.

    Soft Tissues

    This refers to the muscles and tissues around your cervical spine. The cervical spine MRI can detect infections, fluid collections and tumors of these structures.

    Your Cervical Spine MRI Scan

    A cervical spine MRI generally takes about 20-30 minutes or so to complete. If you are going for one, wear loose comfortable clothing and remember to remove all metal (jewelry, phones, rings, etc) before going into the MRI scan room. If you've had surgery or have a history of cancer, you'll probably have the test done with MRI contrast.

    If you're insured, you may need to have your test authorized (approved) by your insurance company first. If you're uninsured  use our website to look up MRI of the cervical spine scan costs, find a certified imaging center and buy your test with a credit card.

    Have you had a Cervical Spine MRI scan? What was it like? Please leave your comments below.

    COMMENTS

    Thanks, this was a very helpful site. I have had sever neck and back pain for 4 weeks now, had xrays and now been sent an mri.

    posted @ Saturday, March 20, 2010 11:55 PM by uzma sarwar


    Thanks ti was very very help ful. 
     
     
     

    posted @ Thursday, April 01, 2010 10:16 PM by yogi


    how accurate it the mri for a cervical spine MRI ?

    posted @ Thursday, April 22, 2010 8:59 PM by


    I had an MRI of my cervical spine which shows a slight bulge between c5 & c6. What does this mean? What should I do about it?

    posted @ Thursday, May 06, 2010 5:13 PM by mary harris


    I had an MRI Scan last week on my spine, as i am experiencing shoulder and arm pain. But the scan said normal, i am still having pain what would be the next option for me?

    posted @ Wednesday, May 19, 2010 8:39 AM by Diane Crimmins


    I just went for an MRI today. This was the first time I went for an MRI and I am 33 yrs old. I was injured at work and saw a Neurologist who wanted an MRI performed to see if I have a herinated disc in my neck. I was bad at all. It was an open MRI, it only took 20mins. I just relaxed and closed my eyes. The machine makes a lot of noises and vibrations. I thought it was going to be a lot worse, but I was very comfortable and the Nurses were very kind. So if you have to go for one, make sure you ask for and open MRI. Hope this helps.

    posted @ Wednesday, June 09, 2010 7:14 PM by Colleen


    i had cervial surgery 6 months ago and my neck still hurts i have to go back to doc because surgery did not work what shall i do

    posted @ Wednesday, June 09, 2010 9:31 PM by sheila


    f you're seeing a new doc make sure you bring all of your preop notes, MRI scans and any MRI or x-rays you had after surgery.  
     
    Also check out this website:www.spineuniverse.com

    posted @ Thursday, June 10, 2010 2:07 PM by Ravi Sohal


    I had neck surgeri 5 monts ago and my neck stils hurts , and continue with pain in arms , and ct scanner and mri but it is normal , and i still having pain what would be the next option for my if all test are good.

    posted @ Friday, July 02, 2010 8:22 AM by gloria Perez


    I had an MRI for neck today. I havenot received the results back. The tech of course couldn't really say anything but he did say I didn't have a bulging disk going through my back. Not sure if that was suppose to be funny...If it isn't a bulging disk where would the pain in my neck and numbness in my arms be coming from

    posted @ Monday, August 09, 2010 6:12 PM by Kim Jarvis


    Had failed on my back but sine hurts from top to mid only if someone hugging me as if resistance or presure causes this issue but after two wks of accident that I ws able to place my head back but than this issue started. I thank you for having this web site. Thank You.

    posted @ Monday, August 09, 2010 8:27 PM by ROSLAND JACKSON


    I had a cervical spine MRI because my shoulders hurt and my entire right arm is numb all the way down to my fingers. It has been like this for about 5 weeks now and I'm a little concerned. Someone told me it might be carpal tunnel syndrone but I haven't gotten my results back from the Radiologist yet. Any suggestions? This tingling in my arm in hand is so annoying.

    posted @ Friday, August 27, 2010 8:17 PM by Kathy W


    A very informational and help site. 
     
    I am having a cervical MRI 9/30. HAVE PAIN ABOUT EVERYWHERE AND TREMORS, HEADACHES,WEAKNESS,ETC. yOUR SITE HAS ANSWERED LOTS OF MY CONCERNS.

    posted @ Wednesday, September 29, 2010 11:52 AM by Patti Hedrick


    Open mri dont show as much as a closed mri does! I was diagnosed with chiari a year ago its rough. Anyone with headaches, neck pain and no disc condition needs to be checked for chiari.

    posted @ Friday, October 01, 2010 10:13 PM by Jennifer


    I started out with migraines, then my neck started hurting along with the migraines. I have weakness in both arms and pain down the left arm and leg. Tingling on the left cheek at times. I am scheduled for a closed MRI on Nov.11th. I am at wits end about the pain and the docs are treating me like some drug addict because of the pain meds. Anyone with similar situation want to chat?

    posted @ Friday, October 29, 2010 10:32 PM by Nicole


    I am having arm and neck pain, this has been going on since April. I had an MRI and the reuslts came back normal. Yet, I am still having arm pain and unsure of what this could be. If anyone has any information please post bc anything at this point would help. As far as the MRI itself, it takes about 20-30 min and is non-invasive. The only discomfort will be the noise from the machine.

    posted @ Tuesday, November 23, 2010 7:56 PM by Misti


    Misti it could be so many things, I'm surprised the MRI came back normal. What exactly did it say? I was having similar issues that led to numbness in my right hand but it eventually went away. Now the arm pain is back. I would have a specialist review the MRI report with you to make sure you completely understand it. Also, get a second opinion. Hope that helps. 

    posted @ Monday, November 29, 2010 8:49 PM by Kathy


    Like many who have already posted here I am having pain and numbness from the right side of my neck, my right side shoulder and down my right arm. 
     
    I first had an xray that determined I had a bone spur that is making contact with the nerve root and causing inflammation. 
     
    I have yet to have an MRI. In Canada everything has an order, based on costs. The average Canadian private MRI imaging clinics charge 25% of what the average U.S. charge for a neck MRI. Both are private providers, why such a big difference? In Canada, you can go to a private clinic and pay yourself or wait up to 2 months, depends on level of pain and seriousness, for 'free' access to the public MRI clinic.

    posted @ Tuesday, December 28, 2010 9:15 AM by pwlg


    Im having an MRI in a few weeks im in constant pain i have lot of pain in my left shoulder going on to my left shoulder blade and it effect my throat, ive notice when ive carried heavy shopping bags the pain gets worse and i feel my throat tightens, pain i have is 24/7 and worsens when carrying heavy shopping or do household things,like hoovering,washing windows etc, i had an op in my left shoulder decompression in year o7 im wondering what this MRI scan will show i no there is something wrong with my shoulder

    posted @ Tuesday, January 04, 2011 3:43 PM by Susan


    I have had really bad mid to lower back pain for about 6 months now. They did xray which said I had scoliosis in my neck,lower and middle mri came back normal. I have achy uncomfortable pain if I stand to long, sit too long, and my legs tingle alot. any ideas? my doctors say they can't do anything cause there is nothing wrong they can see?! please help

    posted @ Monday, January 10, 2011 5:34 PM by lisa


    I wondered what was going to be done to me next week and why. This site has answered my questions. Thanks!

    posted @ Sunday, January 16, 2011 10:36 AM by J. Rust


    Ive been suffering with numbness in both legs... i had an MRI on my spine n it came back normal. I have since seen my neurlogist and he sent me for another on my neck and head, he checked me for MS he seems to think i dont have it. But in the last few weeks i have got worse and can hardly walk, no strength in my legs, need aids jus to be able to walk! I'm numb all over right up to my buttocks n can hardly feel anythin. I'm unable to dress myself now... i had the MRI 4wks ago i was told id get the results in 2 wks??? I'm gettin very scared as to wot is causing this awful thing!! Can any1 shed any light on the situation? Thanks Gina Ps. I have been suffering this 4 nearly 3 and a half yrs ago n its jus got worse!!!

    posted @ Wednesday, January 26, 2011 4:29 PM by gina


    My husbands dr is sending him for an MRI of the neck but has not said why.. He has no neck pain and originally went in for sluggishness and high cholesterol... Any idea why this test may have been ordered???

    posted @ Thursday, January 27, 2011 2:05 PM by Ko


    I have had an Mri last june and revealed 3 buldging discs in c4,c5 and c6... I am now going thru disc decompression therapy for this. Has anyone went through the decompression before?I have been having terrible pain in my shoulder blades and behind my left shoulder blade...

    posted @ Friday, January 28, 2011 9:17 PM by Delores


    I went to get MRI today and it took like 20-25 minutes in the machine. It is a little uncomfortable in the machine the sound and calustophbic feeling. I have pain in may left shoulder and left hand numbness on fingers and tingling.

    posted @ Thursday, March 03, 2011 9:41 PM by Abe


    I went to get MRI today and it took like 20-25 minutes in the machine. It is a little uncomfortable in the machine the sound and calustophbic feeling. I have pain in may left shoulder and left hand numbness on fingers and tingling

    posted @ Monday, March 07, 2011 2:05 AM by lakshmikanthan.R


    I have been having a terrible pain in my upper back fof almost a year, I finally found a doctor that ordered an mri which I am having tomorrow. I hope that figure out whats wrong everytime I straigthen my back where my shoulder blades squeeze it makes me dizzy!! 4/06/11 :(

    posted @ Tuesday, April 05, 2011 9:13 PM by Marcia Hawkins


    Neck pain is just the worst pain have ever known. People, when they have headaches, complain rightly, yet neck pain once it starts like this, doesnt ever go away it would seem. My MRI shows I apparently need neurosurgery. Terrifying prospect. 

    posted @ Saturday, April 09, 2011 9:39 AM by Inochi


    i am afraid to test cervical spine in an open mri, can u please suggest how to overcome

    posted @ Tuesday, April 19, 2011 9:10 AM by sridhar


    I found out today that I have a problem with my cervical spine and am being sent for an mri, probably, according to my DR., in Feb. of next 2012. I am in considerable pain and a little scared. If I have to have surgery what is that like? thanks if anybody cares to answer.

    posted @ Wednesday, May 18, 2011 6:13 PM by Sandy


    i have been having this severe neck pain and headache since last december. I have visited many doctors, gone for scan and x-ray and all were normal. i have been taking pain killer since then. What do i do, i really need help 

    posted @ Tuesday, May 31, 2011 1:19 PM by divine


    I suffered with neck pain and radiculopathy for a decade, gradually escalating the degree of medical intervention. I finally had a two level ACDF which seemed to be working until I lifted something heavy and went back to square one. Look at Bill Walton's story - 23 orthopedic surgeries until he got it right. I don't have that patience.

    posted @ Monday, June 13, 2011 5:10 PM by Ralph


    I have been having neck and right arm pain for six months. my doctor sent me for emg/ncv, cervical spine ct scan and mri w/o contrast all at once. my question is do i actually need all three tests or are they redendent? thanks, michelle

    posted @ Monday, June 27, 2011 1:00 PM by Michelle


    ok im not sure if im posting in the right area here but since its got to do with MRI and the neck, ill try give this a go.  
     
     
     
    I recently got my results for my MRI for the brain which was clear, (got scanned for frequent mild to moderate to severe headaches) however, it also found this: 'reactive lymphoid hyperplasia at prosterior nasopharynx'. Thats abnormal growth of cells at the back of the neck. Ive booked in to see an ENT Specialist,referred by my doc, cos doc says this isnt normal for people and can either disappear or grow.  
     
     
     
    My question is, does anyone know more about this? Or know anyone who has had this? Is it serious? Is it cancerous? I just want to have an idea about it before i see the specialist :s and by the way, the internet seems to have very limited info on this and all i see is cancer cancer cancer :s:s im a tad worried..

    posted @ Friday, July 01, 2011 9:46 AM by sheens


    i have had neck pain and tingling in right hand for months. Just had a mri waiting for results. What do you think?

    posted @ Sunday, July 03, 2011 7:48 PM by judi


    Someone rear ended me in a car accident over 1 yr ago. I have neck and hand problems. My hand is stiff and tingles and I cannot make a fist. 
    I cannot sit/walk or stand for any long. I have tried physo/water arobics/accupuncture/massage/and I am now going to a chiropactor.Please email me if you have the same issues. tks

    posted @ Saturday, July 16, 2011 9:53 AM by donna


    I had an MRI of my cervical spine which shows i have 2-3 posterior disc bulge between c3-4, c4-5,c6-7. What does this mean? What should be done about it.

    posted @ Friday, July 22, 2011 12:16 PM by Liz Gonzalez


    I pray that everyone I read about get thier question answer soon,just about the last ten moths, I've had an mri,ekg.stress test of the heart,plus lots of blood test..normal for everything...my neck hurt so bad,leg,arm,shoulder,eye pain,pain between my legs,even my top of my head hurt and thats the first....I wish everyone the best..

    posted @ Monday, August 22, 2011 8:41 PM by jackie


    I'm to undergo cervical & thoracic MRI tomorrow 8/29/11. Had pain in my right shoulder for years. Pain in the arm for 6 months. Acute pain in the right shoulder down my right arm since March 2011. What can I expect in the future?

    posted @ Sunday, August 28, 2011 7:30 AM by Susan Aztares


    Just had an MRI done today. I have months of neck pain, right arm numbness, headaches, and upper back aches. My doc has just been treating symptoms, baclofen, lidocaine patches, heat, but I wanted to get to the root of the problem. I didn't get "preauthorization" from my insurance company. Hope that doesn't come back to bite me...

    posted @ Saturday, September 10, 2011 7:27 PM by Tony


    hello everyone!!  
     
    I had tingling and numbness to my legs and arms a lot for four months.I tried different chiropractor but none of them help my problem. Now i found cmcc chiropractor at Leslie and steels area they are the best.they make me much better now.I have seen them only a couple of time. I advise every one to go and see them if you have any neck and shoulder pain with tingling and numbness problem.

    posted @ Thursday, September 15, 2011 9:33 PM by sara


    Hi i recently wS DIgnosed with severe spondilosis after an mri scan,i have now been referred to see specialist as they said scan was blurred,what does this mean?

    posted @ Sunday, September 18, 2011 5:45 PM by richard sumby


    I have had left shoulder pain, weakness, numbness and tingling down to my middle finger since March. My doctor has sent me to p.t. for 10 sessions, ordered a back brace which only exacerbated the problem, and prescribed pain killers and anti-inflammatories. Finally tomorrow after 8 months, I am finally getting an mri on both my left shoulder and cervical spine. Like many of you, I am anxious to see what my results will show. And if normal, where to go from there. Has anyone tried acupuncture or other alternatives? My doctor claims if my C6 is pinched, he will then put me to sleep, inject cortisone into the spine with an epidural needle, and do this not once but several times a year. I am going for a second opinion once I get my mri results. It's amazing how many of us are all suffering with the same symptoms. I hope there is a cure for us all.

    posted @ Monday, October 17, 2011 4:19 PM by melissa


    Had 10 sessions of spinal decompression, paid lots of money! Not worth it.

    posted @ Tuesday, October 18, 2011 12:21 PM by asoleno


    11/2/11 - I was ordered an MRI w/contrast on C-spine even though I have no neck pain (pain was in my t-spine which was already given an mri). Curious about why they needed to do my c-spine. In any event, it was a closed MRI and I am claustraphobic so I closed my eyes so I wasn't looking at the enclosed top just above my nose. I was able to handle it.

    posted @ Wednesday, November 02, 2011 2:13 PM by Michelle


    Two weeks ago I fell, results were a large hematoma on left side of my head and shoulder pain. Orthopedist wanted me to see a neurolgist first. Neuro wanted an immediate MRI which shows a herniated disc at C1 which is inopertable. What do they do for this? I have an appt with doc next week. It's going to be a long weekend.

    posted @ Friday, November 11, 2011 4:49 PM by Dottie


    I have been having issues with pain going down my arm and it stays in my shoulder and neck all the time, my fingers have been dropping things alot. I was afraid to go to dr cause the last time I went to him he diagnosed me with skin cancer so put it off for about a month.. He is making me an apt for a MRI on C-spine. I do not need to be having surgery right now cause i am getting ready to graduate from college..Anyone have any ideas?

    posted @ Tuesday, November 22, 2011 3:12 PM by Christine M


    I had an MRI of the C Spine yesterday. I am claustrophobic but if you close your eyes it is quite alright. It is quicker than you think, however the noise is not great so that is the only thing you need to be prepared for. It is for sequences of about two to three minutes each. If you can cope with the noise you will be ok and at the end of the day it does not hurt you only helps you - Good luck :)

    posted @ Saturday, November 26, 2011 5:02 AM by Carol


    I have terrible pain in my left shoulder, which is migratory. It goes down to the left arm and i feel sooooooooo much pain there as well. Also, i feel pain and heat on my left side back. I also feel numbness and tingling both in my shoulder and the arm, what could be the problem? 

    posted @ Monday, November 28, 2011 1:26 PM by Dorothy Mbabazi


    Hi Donna - My accident was over two years ago and I have neck and hand problems also. My neck is always uncomfortable and my right hand is always cold. I also have numbness and tingling in various areas. Have seen Neurologist, Orthopedist, Chiropractor, and had Physical Therapy. All of these things helped to some extent. Yoga and cardio seem to help the most. My trainer said those things may be helping because the exercise increases oxygen to the muscles. I am not sure if it is cardiovascular, muscular, nerves, or bone damage. I am having an my first MRI in two days.

    posted @ Tuesday, December 06, 2011 10:30 AM by Vickie


    I had nerve tests it came back w/chroic c6 rad. And chroic c8 rad. Just went for mri cerv. Spine it didn't take long weather getting colder ser.pain in lt arm that is going to rt arm am I on the rt path

    posted @ Wednesday, December 07, 2011 7:44 PM by amie anderson


    i had a mri on tue.couldn't get it done because i have a sinis trouble and keep clearing my throat and she couldn't get it done.can i be put to sleep for this.

    posted @ Wednesday, December 07, 2011 8:19 PM by carol


    Just remember that an MRI scan dont show everything. It is just the best thing that they have at the moment. Even having an opperation wont necessary fix the pain.

    posted @ Sunday, December 18, 2011 4:28 AM by Ron


    I Started having bad neck issues in Feb of 2011, Dr. recommended neck surgery in July supposedly to clear out the headaches and neck issues, physical therapy made me worse far as the pain , had to stop.The surgery was on C5,6,7 didn't take care of the headaches, pain pills only mask the pain, Neuro Surgeon changed his diagnois and now says I need pain management therapy, I am now wonodering why I have suffered thru neck surgery & still recouperating from that had a artificial disk & plate & screws inserted . would love a response.

    posted @ Monday, January 23, 2012 9:09 AM by Dana Wilson


    i have been having right shoulder pain, pain shoots into my hand and fingers, i drop things and cant hold things for long, have trouble writing causes so much pain, had a emg done they say no corpal tunnel that it shows i have a pinched nerve in my neck, now tommorrow i go for a mri. i just want this pain to stop. any suggestions

    posted @ Monday, January 30, 2012 12:34 AM by jduy


    I've been suffering with both of my shoulders surgery twice on both of them, now the left isn't healing well after 2 yrs so now I have to have a MRI on my next, my question is do they put a collar on you to do it? and can my neck and shoulder be done at the same time? I'm very clostraphobic even with the open MRI machine?

    posted @ Thursday, February 02, 2012 12:11 AM by Tracie Berry


    Hi Tracie, yes if you are having an MRI of your neck then your head will be put in a brace. I am very claustrophobic but the time in there is not as long as you think and they talk you through each phase, i.e. they say the next one will be two minutes or the next one will be three minutes and so on. If your MRI is of your neck and shoulders then it is all done at the same time. Taking a Diazepam half an hour before can help relax you and close your eyes before you go through. As beforehand though about the sound and what they can do to minimise that because that is the uncomfortable bit as it is loud, but remember it doesn't hurt you and you have a button to press if you want to come out. Good luck

    posted @ Saturday, February 04, 2012 4:16 PM by Carol


    Judy, Pregabalin can help with paresthesia but it has to be prescribed for you. If you are given it for the tingling then start off with small doses as a side effect can be dizziness if you start on too higher dose, it should be gradually titrated up. Hope this helps.

    posted @ Saturday, February 04, 2012 4:20 PM by Carol


    Recebt C-MRI showed the following.Mild straightening of Lordotic Spine. Central stenosis at C3-C4as well as C5-C6.From C2-C3 to C6-C7 there 2mmn broadbaased posterior disk protrusions.Neural Foramen show moderate/signficant narrowing on the left. Right shows mildnorrowing. At C4-C5 moderate narrowing on both left and right.At all levelspressure over theantererior aspect of the thecal sac.C6-C7 1.5mmbroad based posterior disk/end plate osteophyte complex causing left neural mod.significant narrowing and moderate narrowing of the right neural foramen.I am a 63 yr. old adult that since my neck has gotten this bad in only 2 years,compared to 2009 C-MRI why life has come to a halt.The best way to put it is there quality of life at all. What am I facing? Who should I be consulting? When should this problem be worked on, in light of 2 yrs. ago this was not the case. I would appreciate your ideas on this issue.

    posted @ Monday, February 06, 2012 2:55 AM by PJT


    I have been suffering severe pain for over 4 years. It started with occasional shooting pains down my left side. Over time I developed numbness/semi-paralysis on my right side. Now I cannot make a sandwich, write a check, fold clothes, etc. I have been to 3 chiropractors and 6 drs. I can't handle painkillers, so I just have to suffer. I had a cervical spine MRI yesterday. Hope it shows the source of my pain!!!!!!!

    posted @ Tuesday, February 21, 2012 3:29 PM by Edna Mae


    I'm going for a cervical spine MRI tomorrow for complete numbness in my right arm that started in my finger tips and radiated up my arm and half way across my chest. CT scan was fine, I have no pain. Three doctors I've seen don't know what is wrong with me. Has anyone else had this problem? It's been like this for 5 weeks now. Any info would be greatly appreciated, thank you.

    posted @ Tuesday, March 06, 2012 5:39 PM by Pam


    I had car accident exactly a year ago. Did physical therapy for about 8 months, been doing chiropractic for a year. Now I am seeing neurologist for 2nd time because although the pain is way less than it was when it first started, I am still in a lot of pain in lower back, right shoulder and neck, get frequent bad headaches, and get "shock-like" pains/tingles in arms and legs which isolate themselves sometimes in wrists, elbows, shoulders, ankles, knees, etc. I sometimes feel as if my right arm goes numb but strangely it also feels like it's shaking even though its not. I did 2 EMGs, xrays, MRI of right shoulder, lumbar (low back) and cervix (neck)last year. Neurologist sending me for MRI of c-spne again thsi week. I hope to have answers, but reading this page, it doesn't seem that likely since many of you have similar situations with no results. :( The MRI is not scary even though I get a little anxious and claustrophobic. I just close my eyes as soon as I get in, think of things that make me smile (ie my family, the beach, funny memories, etc) and just keep remembering that it's almost over. It really only lasts 25 minutes or so and it goes fast because they are constantly updating you. When the loud noises come, just think of something else and get lost in it. You'll be fine! :)

    posted @ Tuesday, March 13, 2012 9:15 AM by Denise


    I just had a MRI/Cervical Spine done no matter what is find. remember it is up to you to help the Dr's help you feel better. A Dr. is not your GOD man can do only so much to fix the human body, so if man made things are medicine can't fix you remember this man is not GOD that all I have to say take it to GOD

    posted @ Tuesday, March 13, 2012 2:21 PM by Stephanie D


    I have been experiencing numbness in my hands , also burning in my arms shoulders and shoulder blades , after the burning then its like a lot of pressure . I also have pain in my neck ! it has been since Oct 2011 and just now getting a MRI 5 months off work because no light duty and after 5 mon. no pay check fighting workers comp . what a joke ...a whole lot of pain also weakness in both arms it sucks ! 
    They tested me for carpal tunnel first and it was neg I sure hope this test shows something I know this pain is not normal .

    posted @ Thursday, March 15, 2012 5:34 PM by Diana Bonitz


    I FELL BACK ON MY RIGHT SHOULDER AND BACK WHEN I SLIPPED ON WET OR SLICK TILE....SINCE THEN I HAVE HAD PAIN IN MY RIGHT SHOULDER,A FEW DAYS LATER MY NECK STARTED HURTING,AND I HAD TINGLING IN MY RIGHT HAND,SINCE THEN I HAVE HAD AN X-RAY,FOLLOWED BY A C-T SCAN X RAY DID NOT LOOK NORMAL ,SO THEY SENT MY FOR A CT SCAN,AND IT APPEARED NORMAL,I STILL HAVE PAIN IN MY NECK AND SHOULDER,WAS GIVIN A ANTI INFLAMMATORY, PAIN MEDICINE,AND MUSSEL RELAXERS FOR THE TINGLING AND PAIN IN MY NECK,MY DOCTOR AS ALSO ORDERED AN MRI......MY NECK IS STIFF ALSO..I HAVE NEVER HAD AN MRI.... DONT LIKE BEING CLOSED UP IN ANYTHING....ANY SUGGESTIONS OR HELP FOR ME...I AM 49 YEARS OLD TOO OLD FOR THIS

    posted @ Monday, April 09, 2012 9:06 PM by LINDA HEWITT


    i have had severe discomfortment in the neck and its been 5 months now, I have weakness of right hand and sometimes i have mild electric shock feeling in the pinky and ring finger passing through the biceps, neurologist suggested MRI which was positive, nothing in MRI, then what is it??????? I am scared as shit and my anxiety levels are going up, can some one help me?

    posted @ Sunday, April 15, 2012 1:54 PM by Aakash


    hi my name is dana i have had conic pain in my hands numbness in my fingers pain up my arms neck pain and my doctor has put me on so many medications its not even funny so now he has ordered me to have a nerve conduction on my hands and now he has ordered me to have an MRI done on my neck so i hope and pray to god that we get to the root of the problem cause i cant take it anymore 
     

    posted @ Thursday, May 10, 2012 6:24 PM by Dana Robinson


    been looking through comments to see if anyone has a pain like mine,i have had neck pain for many years due to degeneration of cervical bones,but had a bad fall last year,didnt break anything but really joggled my neck and it has been really,really painful ever since,the pain starts at the base of my skull,winds up to the top of my head in a wide band that feels like someone is stretching and tightening an elastic band,it makes my ears hot and i just want to lie down and cry

    posted @ Tuesday, May 22, 2012 2:54 PM by trish


    Just curious, all the people on here with chronic pain, do any of your physicians prescribe exercise? As an MRI tech, I see a great deal of patients who wouldn't have the problems they had if they just got out and exercised on a regular basis. There are lots of people with real significant problems, but there are lots of people with problems that could be cured with healthy living. If you've had test after test and they can't figure out why your having that chronic pain, consider exercise.

    posted @ Friday, June 22, 2012 6:40 PM by aaron


    Contact Airrosti - Rehabilitation Center - They use a special therapy to treat the pain. Also K-Tape. ( A + ) 
     
    Furthermore, you can contact The Laser Spine Institute if you have already a Diagnostic w/ X-Rays or MRI - They use Laser to kill the pain !

    posted @ Wednesday, June 27, 2012 2:57 PM by Patricia


    Well on a positive note ive had my mri scan today on my head neck and spine in a scan that was open ended especially for people worried about the scanner after getting claustrophobia 5 years ago from a different scanner,request it....i also got my dr to prescribe me diazapan before i went in which helped the staff were great and i was in the scanner an hour and a half,i had the face and head brace which didnt touch my face and ive got to say after stressing about going for 4 weeks it really was ok,they played abit of music to although sometimes you couldnt hear much but the ear plugs in the machine was a good idea.all in all i wouldnt worry about going in again.now just await results.....

    posted @ Monday, July 16, 2012 1:02 PM by fran


    had my mri,it didn"t show up anything other than the degeneration of the cervical bones,which i already new about,if i am honest i hoped it would show something to account for all the pain i am having so will have to proceed down another road,am seeing an osteopath on friday,hopefully he can make a difference

    posted @ Tuesday, July 17, 2012 9:34 AM by trish


    Hi,I had mulitple MRI's for c-spine 3x post MVA.All came back with 3 bulges.I have pins & needles,numbness,pain++,am on loads of medications.It has been 4yrs and its getting worse.If anyone says it will get better after a while,don't believe them.sorry guys this is the truth.meds and side effect is just as bad, will try hypnotheray.hope this works.

    posted @ Wednesday, July 25, 2012 5:21 AM by Regina Joseph


    I have cobnstant pain in my neck an left arm I had an MRI done an it came bk clear so y am I gettin pain al the tine wot could b the cause

    posted @ Monday, July 30, 2012 11:02 AM by Michelle


    will have my cervical spine mri, had neck and left arm pain for almost a month now...i want to see pictures of the procedure..still searching..:))

    posted @ Sunday, August 26, 2012 6:50 AM by jessica reyes


    I am having numbness and discomfort in my little finger and half of ring finger, controlled by ulnar nerve. The neurologist advised me MRI of cervical spine and Nerve Conduction Velocity (NCV) of both upper limbs.I have got the same done and will be showing to the doctor today.Anybody with similar problem and who has got cured may pls. mail the same.

    posted @ Monday, September 24, 2012 5:05 AM by N GANESH


    so much pain, so much anxiety waiting for appointments for testing that sometimes takes a month! anyways, pain started out in my left shoulder. x rays fine, mri fine..pain went up into my neck and head and now my left hand is pretty much in pain constantly. had my second mri today. anyone else with similar issues? i've been searching the internet and freaking myself out

    posted @ Thursday, September 27, 2012 5:29 PM by kelly


    I have had numbness in my right arm, thumb and index finger. Started as burning in elbow joint. Unable to flex right hand or bend the elbow. tightness ans numbness from arm to shoulder, now to my neck. Had EMG, exrays and MRI conducted. EMG showed C6 nerve damage. But feels light much much more than just C6.

    posted @ Thursday, October 04, 2012 11:00 AM by Tony Clanton


    I fell on my forhead during poledance practice. Two weeks later I went to Dr and was diagnosed with Post concussion syndrome.He told me to get some ibuprofen, and that there is nothing else I can do.I have had intense headaches and neck/back pain for over three weeks now. I have trouble the simplist tasks.I'm trying accupuncture.And accupuncturist recommended me to an Osteopath. Both very expensive.Should I get an xray and or MRI ? I wish my Dr had refered me to get one in the first place now I get to pay another 60$ to try and get a referal.

    posted @ Thursday, November 15, 2012 6:55 PM by Rochelle


    i have had headaches with pressure in back of head along with numbness,tingling in arms now its starting to affect my legs. also have lots of back and neck pain. just resently went for mri. doctor said my cerebellum is dislocated so had to go for another mri with contrast but said it was fine. doctor is refering me to a neurosurgeon. im so worried cause along with that my vision gets blurred when i tilt my head forward. done alot of reading on it and its gotten me scared

    posted @ Monday, November 19, 2012 12:23 PM by regina miller


    I have read all these comments and its what i have. Numbness, pain and tingling in arms, Pain in throat. Sharp pains in my ear. I drop things, it makes me sick. 
    I have been for an MRI and again - it shows all normal. 
    This is not normal. I have it severely where my visions blurs and i have to lie down. 
    Had enough!

    posted @ Wednesday, January 02, 2013 6:42 AM by jess


    i have gone for MRI (NECK) IN OPEN MACHINE BUT I HAVE PROBLEM OF JEE GHABRANA. SO I CAN NOT FINISH MRI TEST. WHAT CAN I DO. PLEASE REPLY

    posted @ Saturday, January 05, 2013 7:00 AM by roop kishore


    Thank You Jesus: I am so glad that I am not the only one with this type of pain. DDD is no joke. And by me being a big women, it is difficult for me to do exercise in such back and neck pains. Apply for disability. It might take a while and if u are denied keep applying. I been through all of this but not any surgery. Like many said it doesn't help. It might not be something man can't cure. I even went to a spine and injury clinic which all they did was stretch my head from my neck. very uncomfortable position. on a machine of course. I had this problem since 2009. I even had a cortisone injection in my neck. I had Physical Therapy. No luck. What else?

    posted @ Monday, January 07, 2013 7:54 PM by Phyllis


    I have been having pain in my neck and it goes to my arm and my middles fingers and also the upper part of my back,numbness,weakness is something else.I'm going for a mri on this Tuesday and my doctor and I will take it from there,this has been going on for two monthes now,I pray comfort comes soon it is hard dealing with day to day pain.I will comtinue to pray for all of us who is suffering.

    posted @ Friday, February 01, 2013 4:27 PM by Tina


    My spouse had a spell of falling in Decemberthen he started having headaches in the back of head and neck that caused his right arm and hand to go numb. He also has severe pain in his shoulders and down his lower back. He had MRI of his head now the doctor wants a MRI of his ceverical spine. will this show what is causing the lower back pain ?Thanks for any help. I can't keep paying $250.00 co-pays everytime doc decides he wants to look lower.

    posted @ Wednesday, February 27, 2013 5:12 PM by Michelle


    I recently had an episode at work, and had to have an mri to test for stroke, thankfully they found nothing. However, last week had a letter for an appt from the neurologist at my local hospital and am now having to have an ultrasound for Carotid Arteries (in two days time) which I would like to know more about and today I received another letter for me to have an MRI Spine Cervical, which is two weeks time. Can anybody settle my mind as to what and why I need these x-rays, if only to rule out something. 
    Thank you very much.

    posted @ Monday, March 04, 2013 7:47 AM by Jane


    most comments sound like thoracic Outlet Syndrome

    posted @ Sunday, April 21, 2013 1:39 PM by `Martha


    My name is Melissa and I have read thru all these comments as well. I had a neck injury last summer. My husband and I were horse playing and i fell off the bed and landed directly on my head. When I got up I was in severe pain. I started having severe headaches for a few weeks then it led to me not being able to move my neck. I really didnt think I was that injured, I thought my body would heal itself, big mistake!!!!! about a month and a half later I started having vertigo, couldnt swallow, my leg left leg was going numb. No one knew what was wrong and wasnt taking my neck injury seriously.. A month later I started having sever pain in my ear and severe jaw pain and neck pain on my left side accommodated with the numbing in my left leg.. I was told I had TMJ, had tubes in my ears then I was told I had labrynthitus. ai went as far as to having my wisdom tooth pulled out. I was having facial paralysis as well. This had been going on for months. I finally went to see a pain doctor who believed that I damaged the nerves in my upper cervical spine, C1 and C2. This is not good.. I had an MRI on my neck and head, not sure what the results are, I see the doc tomorrow. I did have a diagnostic test done on the my nerves, where they number the nerves to see if i get relief and I did. SO they will do one more diagnostic test before the cauterize the nerves, which will have to be done about once a year. I am lucky that I am not full paralyzed but very sad that I have this injury. My whole life has changed just because of horse playing. I use to exercise every day and love life, now I dont. I have had to quit my job and just go to school full time. Im scarred to have my nerves touched bc I dont want any further damage but I cant live like this any more. Has anyone else had a fall like that or been injured. IM just scarred.

    posted @ Sunday, June 09, 2013 4:08 PM by Melissa


    I have horrible burning constant shooting pains in my neck to shoulders down to wrist and fingers.my emg test showed irritation in neck and hands.but the mri was clear.this is a work comp claim and it seems like no one believes me.I just wantto go back to work and do my job without crying in pain.I go for pt this week hoping it will help but now I have pains in my throat and collar bone area.im only 26 and I want to continue my outdoor like lifestyle.but this pain is killing me and starting horrible depression.any ideas please?

    posted @ Monday, September 30, 2013 11:10 AM by lynzie


    I go for a mri of cervical friday but whats crazy is that im havin all my pain on the back of my head under the scalp area. I feel burning pain and feel most of the time like i have a needle under my skin that is trying to come out. i have been fighting with this for over 2 years seen many mds and at the beginning i was pushed off by them saying it was anxiety then some mds tried blaming my adderall which i even stopped just to show everyone it was not the meds causing this and i have always had anxiety it is not that either. after a few mths of experiencing this in the beginning i then started to loose a big patch of hair on the back of my head it was prob the size of a big fist. I was then told it was alopeica so i started recievin shots to make my hair grow back after six months of treatment majority of hair has grown back but the pain as only got worse the more shots i get the worse the pain gets. i was then refered to see a neuro who claims it is occiptial neuralgia so i then was test tryin nerve meds which most of them made me sick i found one that seem to help but as we increase the dosage i would then start to swell really bad. i was also receivin nerve blocks in scalp which was also painful and made my pain even worse. after doin 3 sets of nerve blocks I have decided to ask for an mri which is the only way u can tell if you have occipital neurolgia but my main concern is if they do a mri of cervical are they covering area of head where i am having the most pain at? After going through this for over 2 years im tired and so ready to get answers tired of bein pushed to the side i am now standing up fighting for myself to get things done...but i need to know does a cervical mri also scan the entirer head area as well. pls pls can anyone help me or if u have experienced any of this pls pls let me know what all u did and if u recovered from this what is it that you did to get better. i do know that stress any kind will cause this to act up even more but something is wrong just wish this dam doctors would llsten to me if they would have listen to me 2 yrs ago i prob wouldnt be so dam bad off now im suffering bc of there stupidity...why b a physician if you are not goin to listen to your patient.,.hello the patient who is experience what they tell u knows there body 100% and knows something is not right!!! I need answers pls help me!!!!

    posted @ Thursday, October 10, 2013 9:13 AM by ashley


    I'm glad I found this site and after reading everyone's comments I can definitely relate.  
     
    Been suffering from back and neck pain along with the extruciating shooting pain down my left arm. It gets so painful that at night I can't sleep. Finally figured out it is a result of an injury I had a gym (which at the time thought I had injured my shoulder). It seemed to heal and I carried on exercising. Until a few weeks back I started feeling constant pain so went to see a a physio and had a few sessions of treatment which didn't help at all and she figured I had a pinched nerve in my neck.  
     
    Went to my GP and he referred me to a Neurosurgeon who also made me have a MRI and X-rays. Turns out it's a lot more serious than I thought. I have slipped a disc in my neck and need to have surgery to have a cervical disc replacement. I'm in shock, wasn't thinking it would need surgery! I'm only 26 so it's quite serious for someone my age to have a disc replacement.  
     
    Please can someone give me advice on whether surgery is the way to go or if I should get a second opinion from a Chiropractor for example? I'm really scared as I've never had surgery before and I'm not sure if it's always successful or there are other better alternatives??

    posted @ Thursday, October 17, 2013 1:28 PM by Hayley


    15 yrs ago experienced intense pain from neck left upper back radiating down left arm cominh in waves of around 8 weeks....workers comp claim....experimential physical therapy them carpal tunnel surgery ....after surgery therapy .... No more pain on left side.......now right side same pain ...same symptoms coming in waves except last 10 weeks worse..thumb @ next 2 fingers constantly tingling w/ numbness....X-rays on neck.....Emg/ncv ....now MRI on neck....it's like I have no credibility in regard to my pain & symptoms they are saying not carpal tunnel ....

    posted @ Monday, October 21, 2013 7:57 PM by Renee Plata


    My Doctor requested an MRI and went to do it yesterday.I went happily on to the table but when the process commenced and the upper part of the equipment stopped over me. I panicked. Fear, cold sweat,coldness. The technician stopped the process and I wept openly for more than half an hour. I am claustrophobia. Please advise.

    posted @ Saturday, December 14, 2013 1:29 PM by Reuben Beveny


    Iam a 30yr old female,past year ia have been suffering from pins and needles tingling sensations downs both my hands to my fingers,over year have had numerous tests,ie blood test,nerve conduction tests, ruled oub capple tunnel,arthritis. Then about 3 weeks ago both my legs became badly effected,was admitted into hosptal as an emergency mri scan for head and neck, which showed up nothing, they suspected tumor or MS, which both ruled out. I am in a position now of awaiting neurologist app, cant imagine my life ever being normal again, I am in no pain but my mobility tingling pins and needles on both arms and legs are becoming unbearable. was on Gabapentin,but came off last week,just wanted to rule something else out of the equation. Any help,suggestions, advice would be grateful. I have 2 young children,

    posted @ Tuesday, March 11, 2014 11:55 AM by mary mcmullen


    I, too, am having the hand/arm/elbow pain. Am having an MRI this morning. It will show normal. None of the doctors I have been to want to seriously consider elbow nerve trouble even though I have repeatedly told them that the pain started in my elbow and radiated both ways from there after a morning that I seriously stretched my elbow. When this MRI comes back normal what are the right words I need to say to get these Doctors to understand?

    posted @ Monday, April 14, 2014 7:48 AM by Sharon George


    ihave pain in my left shoulder and arm since two years. in december i got surgury with titinium cervical h plates fixsation. after operation about one month i feel no pain but after that my left arm again having much pain. now i m always left side permanent swear pain which beyond my limits. pleas may any solution so i also spend my life without pain

    posted @ Saturday, April 26, 2014 6:14 AM by abdul raziq


    I was finally referred to a rheumatologist, who diagnosed me with fibromyalgia. However, she does treat patients with the disease. I was referred to a pain specialist. He said he thinks its a neurological problem. I did a number of neck X-rays, now I have a MRI next week. I also have chronic pain all over. Numbness and tingling in my hands, legs and feet. I have migraines, vertigo, neck pain, shoulder pain back pain.  
     
    I do work out 5 times a week. It does make me feel better, almost all the time. I only take monic. The other meds make me really sick, and sleepy.  
     
    I would appreciate and help, comments or advise.

    posted @ Monday, June 30, 2014 5:41 PM by Sharon


    has anyone had any muscle wastage from neck pain ie byceps as I have compressed c5 c6 c7 and weekness in my left arm going for another mri scan this month help

    posted @ Wednesday, July 02, 2014 7:15 AM by kevin


    Does a C-spine MRI show c1/c2? I had one and c1/c2 is not mentioned. My area of pain is c2, would this be considered in the head? Should I get a MEI if head?

    posted @ Friday, July 04, 2014 7:10 AM by Lil


    I am writing re my 34yr. old son.. He has shoulder pain and tingling and pain down his left arm to middle finger at times. Everything is on his left side. This has been going on for 2 yrs. He has seen 2 pain management doctors, shoulder specialist , spine doctor, chiropractor, cranial manipulation person and 3 bouts of PT. First MRI in 2013 showed a herniation of C6-C7. Latest MRI is normal. He is still in pain and nothing relieves it. Where do we go from here? Help! 
     
     

    posted @ Thursday, September 18, 2014 4:39 PM by Phyl Kay


    I'm gonna have a Cspine today for a MRI today cause I been having numbness in my left four fingers now it's on my right thumb

    posted @ Tuesday, November 18, 2014 12:51 AM by Candy White


    I am 78. Whilst driving (30 mph) a car from behind crushed at the rear of my car. I felt pain at the neck. I underwent MR1 evaluation of the cervical spine. No exercise and no wekly tennis was advised. I continued to walk for 1 hr and 2 hr tennis on Sundays. I visited another hospital. The dr advised immediate termination of physical exercise and no tennis any more. Stenosis at c3-c-4 level. Spinal canal anterior-posterior measured 6 mm. What should I do? Operation advised by neurologist.

    posted @ Wednesday, November 26, 2014 12:37 AM by Raif Omer


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