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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 15  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 192-196

Role of magnetic resonance imaging in the evaluation of spinal trauma

Department of Radiodiagnosis, Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College, Datta Meghe Institute of Medical Sciences (Deemed to be University), Sawangi(Meghe), Wardha, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Ayush Gupta
Flat No. 6A, Shanti Vihar Apartments, Pawan Puri, Bikaner, Rajasthan
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jdmimsu.jdmimsu_15_20

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Background: Diagnostic imaging, particularly magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), plays a crucial role in evaluating and detecting spinal trauma. Subtle bone marrow, soft-tissue, and spinal cord abnormalities, which may not be apparent on other imaging modalities, can be readily detected on MRI. Early detection often leads to prompt and accurate diagnosis, expeditious management, and avoidance of unnecessary procedures. Material and Methods: The depiction of parenchymal spinal cord injury (SCI) on MRI not only correlated well with the degree of the neurologic deficit but also bears significant implications in regard to prognosis and potential for neurologic recovery. This prospective observational study was conducted over a period of 18 months from June 2017 to December 2018 on 65 patients with spinal trauma who underwent MRI of the spine. Prior written informed consent was obtained. In our study, it can be concluded that MRI plays a major role in the diagnosis of spinal trauma, directing early and prompt management and predicting prognosis of neurological recovery. Cord edema and normal cord were associated with favorable neurological outcome. Results: Vertebral body fractures, especially in association with cord edema, showed poor neurological recovery, as compared to cord edema and normal cord. Cord transection and cord hemorrhage were associated with complete SCI and with poor neurological recovery. Conclusion: MRI findings in acute SCI correlate well with the initial neurological deficits on admission and at the time of discharge according to the American Spinal Injury Association impairment scale.

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