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Closeup view of young woman having pain in back.

What is Discography?

Herniated and bulging discs are a common source of back and neck pain. When spinal discs rupture or bulge, they can impact nearby nerves in the spinal column, resulting in pain. Spinal discs have a harder outside shell and a soft, inner center, acting as cushions between the vertebrae. Damage to the outer portion of the disc can cause pain, but identifying the damaged disc can be difficult. Discography can illuminate damaged discs for a more accurate diagnosis. As part our interventional treatments at Ospina Medical, we offer discography at our clinic in New York City to determine the source of neck or back pain.

The soft tissue in spinal discs is difficult to view on x-rays, MRIs and other medical imaging. A small rupture or bulge can be present but will not be visible on medical scanning. Discography uses a special dye that is injected into the spinal discs that may be causing neck or back pain. The dye is visible on certain imaging devices, indicating if the inner portion of the disc is extending outside the outer shell. This can identify damaged discs that could be the source of spinal pain.

Diagnostic Tools for Spinal Disc Damage

The discography procedure uses an image-guided needle to inject the contrasting agent into the targeted spinal discs. The area on the back or neck is numbed with a local anesthetic, then the needle injects the dye into the spinal discs. This procedure can identify spinal disc issues, pinpointing possible sources of chronic neck or back pain. A treatment plan can be created based on the results to manage or stop spinal pain.

Injuries, degenerative disease and aging can all impact spinal discs. If you have undiagnosed neck or back pain, come see us at Ospina Medical. We offer advanced diagnostic tools to find the source of pain to determine the best treatment options. Contact our clinic in Midtown Manhattan to schedule your exam and consultation with one of our interventional pain specialists.

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