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Dr. Mark
Dr. Mark, Neurologist (MD)
Category: Neurology
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Experience:  Neurosurgeon - Brain, spine, and peripheral nerve surgery
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Some years ago (12+) I had tingling sensations in my left arm/hand.

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Some years ago (12+) I had tingling sensations in my left arm/hand. After 3 MRI's and a "bone spur" diagonsis by one doctor, I was finally referred to a neurologist who had a CT mylogram order. He found some stinosos in C3 and performed an in office test to confirm corpal tunnel syndrome on the left. One of his comments was that the MRI's were not as informative as the CT mylogram and there is no such thing as a bone spur in the neck.
The question I have is that my wife is having tingling / numbness in both arms and it appears that she is headed down the MRI path by her primary care provider. A X-ray supposedly shows "narrowing" between the vetabrate in her neck. The primary care provider asked if she had her disk fused. She has not seen a neurologist to date. Should she consult a specialist before running up the MRI bills? What sparked my concern was that her primary care provider used the term "bone spurs".
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Neurology
Expert:  Dr. Mark replied 1 year ago.
I disagree with the MRI vs CT statement.

A MRI is excellent for looking at the condition of the spinal cord, and the condition of the intervertebral discs, to see if they are "bulging".

A CT myelogram can help to see similar things, and has better resolution to look at the bone anatomy, but cannot see the nerves or spinal cord as clearly.

But because the CT myelogram involves a lumbar puncture, as well as radiation, I prefer a MRI for the initial evaluation of potential cervical stenosis.

There are "bone spurs" that can occur throughout the neck. They are called osteophytes, and are a result of degenerative changes in the spine. The neurologist who said there is no such thing as a "bone spur" in the neck was incorrect.

Given your wife's symptoms, a MRI would seem appropriate.
Dr. Mark, Neurologist (MD)
Category: Neurology
Satisfied Customers: 11946
Experience: Neurosurgeon - Brain, spine, and peripheral nerve surgery
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