Discography

A discography is a diagnostic procedure used to determine whether a specific spinal disc is the source of pain in patients with back or neck pain. The procedure may be recommended if you experience certain symptoms such as severe, persistent pain which other tests have failed to diagnose or recurrent pain from a previously operated disc. A Discography procedure may also be used to aid in the assessment of patients for other surgical procedures.

How to Prepare

In preparation for your procedure be required to avoid eating the night before your surgery. Your doctor may also advise you to temporarily stop taking certain medications and supplements that may increase your risk of bleeding.

What to Expect

During your visit to our Vancouver practice, you will undergo a detailed assessment to provide Dr. Helper with the information necessary to make an accurate diagnosis.

To begin the procedure, Dr. Helper will position the X-Ray C-arm over the patient and is used to guide the needle into the proper position. After the needle is placed, a contrast dye is injected into the disc to enhance visualization of the site, followed by an anaesthetic steroid solution. The goal of the procedure is to replicate your typical discomfort. You may be asked to help reproduce symptoms by bending, twisting, walking or sitting.

A CT scan will also be performed shortly after the discogram to better assess the anatomical changes in the disc. If internal disc disruption is present then the CT scan will reveal contrast leaking into tears on the inside of the disc.

Next Steps

If you are ready to discuss your pain management needs with Dr. Steven Helper, request a consultation today. During your consultation your patient care coordinator will discuss:

  • Your medical history
  • Diagnosis and Treatment options
  • Potential risks and complications
Discography last modified: July 9th, 2012 by Centric Health
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