Objective : Few studies on the clinical spectrum of automated pressure-controlled discography (APCD)-defined positive discs have been reported to date. Thus, the present study was undertaken to analyze clinical parameters critical for diagnosis of discogenic pain and to correlate imaging findings with intradiscal pressures and pain responses in patients with APCD-positive discs. Methods : Twenty-three patients who showed APCD-positive discs were selected for analysis. CT discogram findings and the degrees of nuclear degeneration seen on MRI were analyzed in comparison to changes of intradiscal pressure that provoked pain responses; and clinical pain patterns and dynamic factors were evaluated in relation to pain provocation. Results : Low back pain (LBP), usually centralized, with diffuse leg pain was the most frequently reported pattern of pain in these patients. Overall, LBP was most commonly induced by sitting posture, however, standing was highly correlated with L5/S1 disc lesions (p < 0.01). MRI abnormalities were statistically correlated with grading of CT discogram results (p < 0.05); with most pain response observed in CT discogram Grades 3 and 4. Pain-provoking pressure was not statistically correlated with MRI grading. However, it was higher in Grade 3 than Grade 4. Conclusion : APCD-positive discs were demonstrated in patients reporting centralized low back pain with diffuse leg pain, aggravated by sitting and standing. MRI was helpful to assess the degree of nuclear degeneration, yet it could not guarantee exact localization of the painful discs. APCD was considered to be more useful than conventional discography for diagnosis of discogenic pain.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Clinical Neurology