ariravenMemberMarch 9, 2012 at 1:57 pmPost count: 3
I had a ct scan on dec 28 2011 at the hospital because of neck and left arm pain, there was no injury just woke up with it the day prior to going to the er.They performed a ct scan and told me everything looked fine and it sounded like cervical radiculopathy and refered me to an ortho. Have been seening the ortho since then for ongoing pain in neck and left arm and performing physical therapy he has now refered me to a pain managment specailist. The pain managment specialist asked me to bring a copy of my ct and report and also asked me to get an mri prior to my first visit. When I got a copy of my report I noticed it said: Calcification seen ventral to the dens within the prevertebral soft tissues, of unclear clinical significance. Could this be the cause of the pain, and what the heck does it even mean? No one has mentioned this to me prior and it has me curious. Thank you for you time in answering my questionDonald Corenman, MD, DCModeratorMarch 20, 2012 at 11:25 pmPost count: 8367
“Calcification ventral to the dens” means that there is calcification (calcium deposition) in the area right in front of the C2 vertebra. The dens belongs to the C2 vertebra and the C1 vertebra arch is right in front of C2. This area of calcification could be between the C1 ring and the C2 dens or in front of the C1 ring but inadvertantly called “in front of the dens”.
Calcification can occur from injury, inflammation, infection or simple “wear and tear”. I cannot tell you the significance of this calcification but more likely than not, it is not causing your lower neck pain or arm pain.
The CT scan is reliable to look for foraminal stenosis (see website for description) but does not demonstrate as well the presence of a disc herniation. An MRI would be a much better imaging test for herniations.
Dr. CorenmanPLEASE REMEMBER, THIS FORUM IS MEANT TO PROVIDE GENERAL INFORMATION ON SPINE ANATOMY, CONDITIONS AND TREATMENTS. TO GET AN ACCURATE DIAGNOSIS, YOU MUST VISIT A QUALIFIED PROFESSIONAL IN PERSON.
Donald Corenman, MD, DC is a highly-regarded spine surgeon, considered an expert in the area of neck and back pain. Trained as both a Medical Doctor and Doctor of Chiropractic, Dr. Corenman earned academic appointments as Clinical Assistant Professor and Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, and his research on spine surgery and rehabilitation has resulted in the publication of multiple peer-reviewed articles and two books.
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