Which Is Better For Back Pain MRI Or CT Scan?

What back conditions qualify for disability?

Some examples of back problems that may qualify include degenerative disc disorder, arachnoiditis, spondylitis, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, herniated discs, nerve root compression, scoliosis, spinal stenosis, and spondylolisthesis..

What type of doctor treats nerve damage?

A neurologist is a specialist who treats diseases in the brain and spinal cord (the central nervous system), peripheral nerves (nerves connecting the brain and spine to the organs, like the lungs or liver), and muscles.

What organs can be seen on a lumbar MRI?

Lumbar spine MR imaging may detect abnormalities of the kidneys, adrenal glands, liver, spleen, aorta and para-aortic regions, inferior vena cava, or the uterus and adnexal regions.

What scan is best for back pain?

The MRI (Magnetic resonance Imaging) was developed in the 1980’s and has revolutionized treatment for patients with low back pain. An MRI scan is generally considered to be the single best imaging study of the spine to help plan treatment for back pain.

Can a CT scan detect back problems?

A CT scan is one of many imaging tests your doctor may use to investigate problems with your spine. This includes pain due to injuries, disease, or infection. Other reasons your doctor might order a lumbar CT scan include: back pain accompanied by fever.

What can a CT scan show for back pain?

CT scanning of the spine is also performed to:assess spine fractures due to injury.evaluate the spine before and after surgery.help diagnose spinal pain. … accurately measure bone density in the spine and predict whether vertebral fractures are likely to occur in patients who are at risk of osteoporosis.More items…

What can a CT scan show that an MRI Cannot?

Both MRIs and CT scans can view internal body structures. However, a CT scan is faster and can provide pictures of tissues, organs, and skeletal structure. An MRI is highly adept at capturing images that help doctors determine if there are abnormal tissues within the body. MRIs are more detailed in their images.

What will an MRI of the back show?

An MRI scan provides a different kind of image from other imaging tests like X-rays, ultrasound, or CT scans. An MRI of the lumbar spine shows the bones, disks, spinal cord, and the spaces between the vertebral bones where nerves pass through.

What if my MRI showed nothing?

The bottom line is that not all pain is able to be detected on an x-ray or MRI. That does not mean that there is nothing there that needs to be treated or diagnosed. In fact, it means that it is possibly a precursor to something going really wrong and then eventually needing surgery because it eventually winds up torn.

What does a neurologist do for lower back pain?

Every back pain and neck pain patient is unique, with different degrees of problems associated with a bone or disc abnormality. A neurologist is trained to discover the causes of symptoms, as well as using EMG testing to assess the injury to nerves and whether it is reversible in the short and long term.

Should I get an MRI for back pain?

If someone is experiencing pain in their lower back, a doctor may recommend a lumbar MRI scan to help diagnose the source of the pain. A doctor may also order a lumbar MRI for a person who is about to undergo back surgery.

Can you see inflammation on a CT scan?

A CT scan can reveal a tumor in the abdomen, and any swelling or inflammation in nearby internal organs. It can show any lacerations of the spleen, kidneys, or liver.

Does a CT scan show herniated discs?

A computerized axial tomography scan (a CT or CAT scan) or a magnetic resonance imaging test (an MRI) both can show soft tissue of a bulging disc. These tests will show the stage and location of the herniated disc so you can receive proper treatment.

What is the best medicine for lower back pain?

NSAIDs are often the go-to drugs for back pain relief. They can be purchased over the counter (or, in higher doses, by prescription) and include ibuprofen (Advil) and naproxen (Aleve). NSAIDs help reduce pain, swelling, and inflammation in muscles and around damaged spinal discs or arthritic joints.

Will MRI show back problems?

MRIs can over-diagnose back problems and may lead to invasive and often unnecessary treatment. The use of MRI should be limited to cases with clear warning signs such as weakness in the extremities, history of cancer, fevers, infection or loss of bowel or bladder control.

How do you know if back pain is muscle or disc?

Back strains or sprains tend to hurt less with bending forward, and more with returning from a forward bend. 2. Herniated discs are often associated with shooting pain and numbness that travels down one of the legs. Lower back sprains and strains tend to have “centralized” pain (only in the lower back).

Does an MRI scan show nerve damage?

MRI is sensitive to changes in cartilage and bone structure resulting from injury, disease, or aging. It can detect herniated discs, pinched nerves, spinal tumors, spinal cord compression, and fractures.

Does an MRI show inflammation?

MRI is an imaging method that is very sensitive in detecting inflammation and also bone erosions. This makes MRI an interesting tool to measure the course of the disease in randomised clinical trials and this suggests that MRI may also be useful in the diagnostic process.