Thursday, January 28, 2010

Why doesn't the MRI show everything?

I just had a telephone conversation with my doctor to get the results from last week's MRI of my wrist, hand, and forearm. It seems the "only" unusual thing noted in that MRI was "ulna minus variance." I Googled that, as you knew I would! I found references to "ulnar minus variance" and "ulna minor variance" and even took a look at some of the Google images in that search.

I really love Google for information! You know I've talked about Google LOTS and how much I love that search engine; which is my favorite you know. Well, even my doctor confessed that she too Googled "ulna minus variance."

One thing leads to another in that searching for a little understanding about my "ulna minus variance," I happened upon a discussion at Medscape about right wrist pain. OK, I am impressionable, so my eyes popped when I read this there:
Kienböck disease is the eponym for avascular necrosis of the lunate ... Most patients are in their third to fourth decades and present with dorsal wrist pain with use. The association of Kienböck disease with ulnar minus variance is well documented, estimated to occur in up to 74% of patients with ulnar minus variance. It is thought that these patients are predisposed to abnormally increased stresses across the lunate resulting in microtrauma leading to necrosis.
OK, now I have a bit of a headache too! In addition to hand and wrist pain.

I've been undergoing massage therapy for the past couple of weeks, but we've stayed clear of my writing hand! What I did share with my doctor today is the fact that my MRIs have never truly indicated the scope or severity of the injury. I've had MRIs of my shoulder, knee, and foot. It was probably only my torn meniscus that appeared accurately in that MRI. The MRI of my left shoulder did not fully show the detached bicep nor the torn labrum -- which resulted in repair surgery lasting over 3.5 hours.

So, the next step is a consultation with a hand orthopedic specialist and possibly a neurologist to assess the pain. You see, the too much information that I could share with my readers has to do with my previous pain management for RSD -- reflex sympathetic disorder connected with my shoulder surgery. Let me tell you THAT was a bit of a nightmare. I've not talked about this online, but probably should have as going through RSD, pain sufferers really do need support groups ... support groups of their peers. It helps to talk with others who can fully understand the depth of the pain. If I have to have the RSD journey again, I will be reaching out to connect with others out there who UNDERSTAND.


Rich said...

I'm so sorry to hear about this continuing problem for you, Julie.

I know that this type of physical pain can have such an effect on our mental outlook, so I hope your spirits are not too low.

Hoping that this present situation can be resolved soon for you.

Unknown said...

Keep us posted. I feel your pain - in my knees, grrs! Chin up.

Julie Ann Brady said...

Hey Bonnie and Correen. Thanks girls for the girl support. Yes, they say what does not kill you will make you all the more "stronger" and that's certainly what I also learned from my grandma.

I remember the time my grandma fell down steps entering the Rapid Transit terminal in Cleveland, Ohio. She badly hurt her leg; but she never stopped going and going -- she continued to work at the West Side Market to help support her family.

Hugs to you! I do appreciate you being here and there. ;)

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