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Dr. Mark
Dr. Mark, Doctor (MD)
Category: Health
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Experience:  U.S. Physician/Surgeon in Neurosurgery
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I received the report on my MRI (Lumbar spine without

Resolved Question:

I received the report on my MRI (Lumbar spine without contrast). The doctor explained a little but I am still confused .It seems I am pretty much okay until we come to L4-5. I am taking from the report: Atl4-5, there is 8mm of grade I anterolisthesis. There is severe bilateral facet arthrosis with prominent hypertrophic spurs. There is thinning of the pars bilaterally without definitive evidence of pars defect. There is uncovering of the posterior disc space as well as a prominent circumferential disc bulge. Degenerative changes along with the anterolisthesis result in severe compression of the thecal sac & lateral recesses with disc material abutting the origin of the L5 nerve roots bilaterally. There is moderate to severe bilateral neural foraminal stenosis with abutment of the exiting nerve root by disk material & small osteophytic spurs. At L5-S1, there is mild degeneration without focal disc protrusion. There is mild facet arthrosis. There is no neural foraminal stenosi
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Dr. Mark replied 7 years ago.
Atl4-5, there is 8mm of grade I anterolisthesis.

You have a "slip" of the bones, L4 forward on L5, 8mm.

There is severe bilateral facet arthrosis with prominent hypertrophic spurs.

There is severe arthritis in the joints at that level in your back.

There is thinning of the pars bilaterally without definitive evidence of pars defect.

A specific area of bone in this region is thinner than normal, but does not appear fractured/broken.

There is uncovering of the posterior disc space as well as a prominent circumferential disc bulge.

There is a disc bulge at this level.

Degenerative changes along with the anterolisthesis result in severe compression of the thecal sac & lateral recesses with disc material abutting the origin of the L5 nerve roots bilaterally.

These degenerative changes -- along with the "slip" in the bones causes compression of the nerves at this level, with the bulging disc hitting the L5 nerve roots on both sides. The translation of this is that you can be having pain that shoots down into the buttocks, down the backs/outsides of the thighs, and into the calves / shins and feet.


There is moderate to severe bilateral neural foraminal stenosis with abutment of the exiting nerve root by disk material & small osteophytic spurs.

There is narrowing of the areas where the nerves travel out to make their way into the legs, and also another reason for the pains I described above.

At L5-S1, there is mild degeneration without focal disc protrusion. There is mild facet arthrosis. There is no neural foraminal stenosi

Mild degenerative changes are seen at the level below, but nothing really major.

The injections you got in the back are likely steroid injections, in an attempt to reduce inflammation of the nerves.

But this is certainly a MRI that should be evaluated by a neurosurgeon, since it does appear you are having significant compression of the nerves at L4-5, consistent with lumbar stenosis:

http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00329
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