Finding the source of back pain can be difficult due to the wide variety of spinal issues that can result in similar pain. A spinal disc injury or degeneration is a common cause of lower back and sciatic nerve pain. However, for effective treatment, the affected discs must be identified. Due to the composition of spinal discs, damage may not be evident with many types of imaging. Discography is a diagnostic tool that can help identify disc damage to determine the best treatment plan to offer pain relief.
At Hanowell Spine Clinic, we strive to find the exact source of spinal pain to create an effective treatment plan for our patients. Proper diagnosis is critical in treating the source of pain and giving patients long-term relief. We use discography as one of our diagnostic options when evaluating the cause of neck and back pain when we suspect spinal disc damage. A discography uses the injection of an illuminating substance into spinal discs to identify damaged discs to determine the best treatment for pain relief.
What to Expect During Discography
Discography is not a treatment, but a guided-imaging technique that can help identify spinal disc damage. In most cases, discography is used to identify damaged discs in the lower or lumbar back region. The area is numbed with a local anesthetic and an x-ray guided needle is inserted into the discs with suspected damage. A contrasting or illuminating agent is delivered into the center of the disc, and if the agent spreads, it can indicate damage. This is usually performed on discs with no suspected damage as well, to offer a contrast or control image for diagnostic purposes. The procedure usually takes less than an hour and can offer beneficial information to help treat your back pain.
If we can identify the spinal discs with damage, we can offer treatment options to repair the disc or to offer relief from pain. If you have been suffering from back pain, come see us at Hanowell Spine Clinic. We use advanced diagnostic tools, like discography, to identify the source of your pain and create a treatment plan to give you relief.