BlackSwanParticipantApril 29, 2013 at 7:22 amPost count: 10
Hello Dr. Corenman,
Thank you in advance for taking the time to help me.
Many years ago an osteopath pressed on my thoracic spine and i felt/heard a pop. I had mild burning in area for 2 weeks. That subsided and it was never investigated. i was steady for 4 years after until I had a mild car accident causing a bit of whiplash. I had pins and needles in my mid back along with some burning pain. I had an MRI 2 years ago after MV accident and this is what it read:
T5/T6 small right paracentral disc protrusion with annual fissuring and contact and mild flattening of right anterior aspect thoracic cord. Neural exit foramina and spinal canal adequate. Scoliosis convex to left centered at T5/T6. Normal signal
I have been reviewed by an orthopaedic spine specialist and he has said that there is nothing in my MRI films that alarms him or warrants surgery. Though he only looked at my films and did not read my report.
I am ok most days but my spine is very oversensitive along the bony parts, and even my bra strap hurts it sometimes. I did have nerve pain radiating along the side but that went away a while ago, and now If I sleep on my back or sit in the car too long against the chair the damaged bits get aggravated and flare up, and there will be a larger circumference of irritation and burning until it settles down and the next episode of aggravation & burning occurs. Its on again/off again. But it always gets better.
My question is, is this something that needs to be diligently monitored? Is the MRI report innocent enough like my orthopedic states? Is there any advice that you would give me on how to live with this?
Thank you!!!Donald Corenman, MD, DCModeratorApril 29, 2013 at 7:30 pmPost count: 8611
A small disc herniation at T5-6 can cause three different types of symptoms. The most rare symptom is myelopathy, the dysfunction of the spinal cord. This almost never happens with the size of disc herniation you have.
The second is radiculopathy or compression of the spinal nerve that exits the cord. This will cause radiating chest pain as you had previously described. Normally, this pain will disappear over time.
The third is local spine pain from the degenerative disc disease. This is the most common symptom of a thoracic herniated disc.
Your disorder as described and symptoms are not serious and you can use common treatment methods. Chiropractic, massage, physical therapy, medications and epidural injections (rarely facet injections) are the treatment options.
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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