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Explain MRI, will I need surgery

Not sure what my results are explaining. I have had 3 back surgeries, I'm in a lot of pain. Can anyone explain the listed information?

Severe narrowing of the central canal and thecal sac at L3/L4 with moderate bilateral neural

foraminal narrowing.

Mild congenital narrowing of the central canal, 
also seen on the previous study. No evidence of significant cord compression



  • Hi Carla381

    Welcome to Spine-health

    There are no medical professional on this site and the rules clearly state you must not ask for interpretation of MRI images or other items. Please re-read the forum rules, so this does not happen again in the future.

    I have added two links below to help new members with information and these also contain the forum rules. There is lots of material to research that will give you the power of knowledge.

    I hope this helps, alongside your appointment for your specialist who you can also ask what these findings mean.

    Welcome to Spine Health


    Spine-Health Moderator

    L5/S1 herniation Apr 2013
    nerve root injections Oct 2013
    L5/S1 discectomy Jan 2014
    L5/S1 nerve roo &, facet joint injections & edpidural Jan 2015
    L5/S1 revised discectomy, L4/L5 discectomy & Wallis Inswing Stabilisation L4/L5 May 1st 2015
    L4-S1 TLIF with decompression June 2017
  • Another good resource for learning about the spine, and it's conditions is chirogeek. You need to research your condition yourself and know the terms for your anatomy: thecal sac, cord compression, etc.

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  • Trust your doctor to interpret the report. What a Radiologist may see, a spine doctor may see differently. That's one of the reasons it's risky letting others tell you what the reports mean. I certainly get that you're nervous and want to know what lies ahead. I would suggest you look at the "Pain Management" page for ideas on what all is out there for relief.

    Several Epidurals, L4-S1 360 ALIF, Numerous Facet Joint Injections, RFA x2
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