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Radiology. 1983 Sep;148(3):757-62.

Nuclear magnetic resonance imaging of the spine.


Forty subjects were examined to determine the accuracy and clinical usefulness of nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) examination of the spine. The NMR images were compared with plain radiographs, high-resolution computed tomograms, and myelograms. The study included 15 patients with normal spinal cord anatomy and 25 patients whose pathological conditions included canal stenosis, herniated discs, metastatic tumors, primary cord tumor, trauma, Chiari malformations, syringomyelia, and developmental disorders. Saturation recovery images were best in differentiating between soft tissue and cerebrospinal fluid. NMR was excellent for the evaluation of the foramen magnum region and is presently the modality of choice for the diagnosis of syringomyelia and Chiari malformation. NMR was accurate in diagnosing spinal cord trauma and spinal canal block. The normal disc was seen, but with rare exceptions bulging of the annulus and herniation of the nucleus pulposus were not visualized.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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