WSM Medic

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Physical examination such as leg raising, bending and stretching are crucial to the diagnosis of slipped disc. Once you feel discomfort or pain while performing the physical examination, further examination will be taken to pinpoint the root cause of the pain.

Additional info on webpage only: This posting will be explaining and differentiating all kind of examinations including Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), Electromyogram (EMG), Myelogram and Computerized Tomography (CT) scan in brief.

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) uses magnetic field and radiofrequency waves, which is able to capture the detailed view of the soft tissues of spinal cord and surrounding areas. An MRI can help evaluate the soft tissue in the spine and neck to detect which spinal or cervical disc is damaged? How severe is it? And if there is any pinched nerve involved?

Electromyogram (EMG) is a nerve test to determine if any nerves are damaged or compressed. This test involves a device to send electrical impulses to your nerves to see how well they respond. EMG test is required only when doctor suspects you might already have nerve damage, depending on your response on pain levels.

During the physical examinations, our muscle cells will make a tiny amount of electricity when they are stimulated by nerves connected to them. A needle electrode is put into the muscle to record its electrical activity and look for anything abnormal.

A Herniated disc will not be detected or displayed on X-rays, as X-ray can only capture the images of hard tissue such as bones, but not the images of soft tissue like disc. However, X-ray images are important for doctor to detect other source of pain such as bone fracture or tumour.

Myelogram is a type of X-ray with dye (contrast material) injected into the spinal fluid in order to evaluate abnormalities of the spinal cord, or to determine whether is there any compression on the nerves.

CT scan is another type of X-ray which takes several X-rays from different angles and combines them to produce 360 degrees, cross-sectional view of body. It is better for imaging calcified tissues, like bones, generating excellent detail used to diagnose osteoarthritis and fractures.

Doctor might conduct few testes on you to identify the root cause of your disease, and rules out other possibilities.