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MRI not showing anything so Im referred to Psychiatrist???



  • timsdeecettimsdeece Posts: 42
    edited 11/28/2018 - 8:15 AM

    "A small right central disc herniation at T2-3 that mildly indents the
    right ventral spinal canal and thecal sac, contacting and indenting the
    right ventral aspect of the spinal cord".  And a "C5/C6 disc bulge
    mildly indents ventral spinal cord" .

    I recommend you find a surgeon who does artificial disc replacements and ask about their opinion on your case.

    Personally I think somatisation is a cop-out diagnosis for doctors who are either too insecure to admit they don't understand your case or too lazy to bother further testing. So you're aware, somatisation is a diagnosis of elimination. it can only be proposed as a diagnosis after all other testing of other possible diagnoses have been exhausted - even then it can only be proposed as there's no actual mechanism nor body of rigorous scientific evidence supporting the view that serious, intractable, chronic pain can be caused by somatisation.

    Have you had diagnostic injections? A CT discogram? Have your herniated discs been surgically treated? no? Then how can they be ruled out as the cause for the neck pain? they are the most obvious candidate.

    I've had intractable nerve pain for 8 months that radiates from L4/L5 and local tenderness at exactly that location. On MRI that disc and only that disc appeared to be degenerative, when all others were completely fine (meaning it was more likely damaged from deadlifting/squatting/running than I have genetic issues) . My doctor tried to break out the somatisation nonsense despite the very clear indications of the imagery. He a[edit] path to treatments by writing on my referral letters for interventional pain management and rheumatological opinions that I was a very stressed individual and there are lots of stressors in my life, something he completely fabricated. I had no history of stress or any mental illness. I changed GP and am in discussions with multiple surgeons about my options.

    Fact is, just about anyone can be made to look like a stressed individual. He took the fact that I was a PhD student to create a narrative that I was very stressed. Fact is, I couldn't give a shiny shite about my PhD; I could be told to leave and never come back and I couldn't care less. The only thing stressing me is being denied treatment.

  • jme123jjme123 Posts: 27
    edited 11/27/2018 - 7:48 PM

    Thanks all for the validation and comments he did a good job making me feel crazy.,..Everytime I feel pain now Im going to think its all in my head and not normal to feel this way, real nice. I will try not to and know this is not true but the man was basically yelling at me because the MRI doesnt show my symptoms the it all in my brain. I feel completly run down over this, every time I go to doctor they make me feel worse.

    When I tried to explain any symptoms he explained MRI is gold standard of medicine if it doesnt show its coming from your brain. So I guess he would say this as well to all patients that has a nomal MRI?

    No I have not had a CT scan they wont even offer it because they are so fixated on the MRI is the only one needed! He looked really annoyed when I said I was going to look into getting stand up MRI, not sure why.

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  • L4_L5LL4_L5 Posts: 1,441
    edited 11/27/2018 - 6:55 PM

    Why are you saying your MRI is normal when the report says the following:

    ”A small right central disc herniation at T2-3 that mildly indents the right ventral spinal canal and thecal sac, contacting and indenting the right ventral aspect of the spinal cord".
    “C5/C6 disc bulge mildly indents ventral spinal cord.”
  • jme123jjme123 Posts: 27
    edited 11/27/2018 - 7:07 PM

    Thanks L4_L5 for pointing that out, I am saying it because thats what the man was basically yelling at me(that is was normal). He told me there is no way the pain Im describing and arm pain are coming from there and he just kept saying its all normal and coming from my brain! 

    I seriously find it odd that if you have normal MRI's your told by Neurologists its all coming from your brain. This seems very extreme attitude, do all Neurologist do this? 

  • L4_L5LL4_L5 Posts: 1,441
    edited 06/19/2019 - 3:19 PM

    I would try a new neurologist or neurosurgeon. 

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  • nutcase007nnutcase007 United StatesPosts: 953
    jme123 - As my current neurosurgeon told me, "Neurologists are basically worthless in diagnosing spine injuries/issues".  A good peripheral neurologist can find peripheral nerve issues.  Also again from my neurosurgeon, "MRIs are just another diagnostic tool.  They are overrated and are NOT the gold standard".  This neurosurgeon went on to say that,  "Any doctor that only uses MRIs for spine diagnosing spine issues, get away from him/her ASAP and find another doctor".  My neurosurgeon taught at a medical school and is know as one of the best neurosurgeons for complex spine issues in my part of the country. 
    I agree with what my neurosurgeon told me because of my own experience.  I was jerked around for 17 years with other neurosurgeons, neurologists and physiatrists because they all kept only looking at my MRIs and EMGs to keep telling me there was nothing there and it was all in my head.  Yes, they called/told me I was a nutcase.  They also all sabotaged access to my current neurosurgeon.  I was begging to see my current neurosurgeon, while my former neurosurgeon, former super jerk neurologist and physiatrist were all in the same practice as my current neurosurgeon.  Oh, and in addition, my former PCP also sabotaged any referral/access to my current neurosurgeon. 
    All said, all of these jerk doctors were only relying on MRIs and EMGs resulting in denied surgery that I desperately needed for 17 years, while working (sic) with my current neurosurgeon in the same office/practice.  When I finally got access to my current neurosurgeon via a referral form a pain management doctor (outside of the practice), my neurosurgeon had my primary and worst cervical issue identified and I had surgery within a month.  He told me after that surgery that I had the worst bruised spinal cord that he ever saw in his 25+ years of neurosurgery that wasn't severed.  I now have permanent spinal cord damage for the rest of my life because jerk doctors only relied on MRIs and EMGs. 
    I hope people reading my post have figured out that I am angry.  I think I gotten over the rage, at least my psychologist tells me I have.  I am now on long term disability (most likely for the rest of my life).  I'm angry because I couldn't do the things with my kids while they were growing up that I wanted/should have been able to do with them.  The pain/anger it caused my wife.  The many relationships that I lost over my years because of chronic pain because jerk doctors were fixated on MRIs and to arrogant to let see the surgeon that could have helped me in 1998, but took until 2006 that I finally got access to him.  I am also angry of all the medical costs, lost salary, now reduced income since I'm now on SSDI and now things I won't be able to do in retirement.  I realistically estimate that I lost over one million dollars because of jerk doctor that only looked at MRIs and EMGs.       
    I know other spine patients that lost so much in their lives because of lack of proper diagnosis (again, almost of the time the doctors were only looking at MRIs).  Yes, MRIs have their place, but are just another tool. 
    I hope the site moderators do not feel the need to delete this posting.  If needed to keep my posting within site policy, please feel free to edit portions.  Please let my anger "show through".  I lost so my in life because of incompetent and arrogant doctors.  I know that I am not alone in my experience.
    I have of late become more outspoken on this topic, because I appear to be one of the fortunate ones that might be able to obtain significant recovery and have at least a moderate quality of life.  It looks like I have at least another year of difficult rehab work.  I've been able to obtain some recovery of quality of life and it appears that working with both my neurosurgeon and current PCP (who doubles as my current pain management doctor), we have found a "wormhole" (term borrowed from the space trekkies) that looks extremely promising.  Quality of life improvement sure helps reduce my rage.  

  • I’ve heard myelograms are the gold standard.

  • My first referral to an orthopedic surgeon did not go well. He was very aggressive and almost yelling at me regarding surgery for my lumbar spine. He kept stating that because I'm an artist that I need to get surgery as it's important for making the world beautiful. It was a weird situation and I didn't feel comfortable in that office.

    My pain management doctor referred me to my current neurosurgeon and I love him to bits. He's much more calm and takes the time to explain why certain tests are needed, and why a particular surgery is needed for the best possible outcome.

    I was sent for my lumbar pain, but he saw I had a cervical CT scan and wanted to see what was going on there. He ordered a full spine MRI to see how much injury I had to my spine and where it was.

    Turned out that my spinal cord was severely compressed between C5-C7, and there was severely stenosis and degenerative disc there as well. I also have severe lumbar stenosis with sciatic nerve root compression that interferes with my ability to walk.

    We both decided together to do the ACDF first, as it was the most severe, and I had more compression than showed up in the MRI. I had a severe spinal cord injury that could have been catastrophic. Glad I got referred to him.

    My neck feels awesome now thanks to him. He's going to do my next surgery on my lumbar spine soon, hopefully this month.

    It's so important that doctors spend time to care about their patients and talk about the different options available without sounding arrogant. I got very lucky with my neurosurgeon. I wish everyone could have access to docs like the ones on my team.

    Wishing everyone a better, pain free day, and lots of hugs, too.

  • jme123jjme123 Posts: 27
    edited 12/17/2018 - 10:25 PM

    I was shocked after I recently looked at paperwork I have at home from 3 specialists. I found they manually found and documented exact areas MRI is showing(C5 bulge and T2 herniation). Also found MRI request form from 2015 (that was instructed by emergency room doctor) states to look for issues from C5-T1. (it came back negative.)

    -Current MRI (that was to primarily examine base of my skull as suggested by chiropractor)  DOES all of a  show sudden show injuries almost exact matches emergency room doctors request of examination on MRI 2015 (to examine C5-T1).

    -I'm confused why all of a sudden does the MRI that was previouly negative(2015) all of a sudden positive (2018) And why has no one caught on that current MRI is showing exact problem the emergency room doctor requested in 2015 that was negative, only this time it is a positive match? 

    -No one will listen to me I feel like Im banging my head against a wall, the doctors are immediately hostile with me, it seems because they know its for potential disability claim I can barely get a word in.

     -I dont have family doctor so Im bounced around and no one has these records all together.  Im hoping this paperwork I have may show some proof, Im just surprised the hospital or anyone has not put it together as a match, so exhausting. The Neurologist was only comparing proof from Motion Xray, he has none of these specialists findings or emergency room doctor.

    -So my current MRI is being ignored because its purpose was to compare the base of my skull only, no one realizes it did show what I have been complaining about for 10 years, (there is 2 issue regarding my neck base of skull and down my spine but Neurologist does not understand this I guess). 

  • MRIs are read by radiologist and surgeons, he may have been comparing your previous ones and looking or differences to explain your pain and that is why he was saying negative changes, just a guess... My first experience with ortho and nuero surgeons concerning my neck, back pain and tingling in fingers the MRI didn't show damage that would equate to the symptoms, went to a third neurosurgeon who did a myelogram and found the overriding issue at that time and had a 4 hour laminectomy that was supposed to last less than 90 minutes but due to the scar tissue on the nerve outlet a c4/c5 it took that long.  Keep looking for answers, someone will find the cause, I would see the psychologist , it might help reduce your stress levels while searching for answers.

    laminectomy c4/c5 2008, ACDF c4-c7 Jan 20 2014, pseudo arthrosis suspected 2017, diagnosed  2019.  Revision C6/C7 pending. Multiple ruptured discs lumbar, l2-s1.
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