The limited protocol MRI in diagnosis of lumbar disc herniation

Chawalparit, O.; Churojana, A.; Chiewvit, P.; Thanapipatsir, S.; Vamvanij, V.; Charnchaowanish, P.

Journal of the Medical Association of Thailand 89(2): 182-189


ISSN/ISBN: 0125-2208
PMID: 16579004
Document Number: 2560
Objective: To assess agreement in detection of lumbar disc herniation (LDH) between limited and full protocol MRI.Material and Method. 123 patients who requested lumbar MRI for diagnosis of disc herniation were assessed The full protocol MRI composed of sagittal T1-wi, sagittal T2-wi and axial T2-wi was performed on each patient. The sagittal T2-wi was selected as the limited protocol MRI. The limited and full protocols MRI of each patient were separately interpreted by three neuroradiologists to assess disc herniation and nerve root compression. The consensus results of limited and full protocol were compared. The diagnostic performance of each protocol was analyzed using surgery as the gold standardResults: There were 62 females and 61 males enrolled into the study between the age of 21-60 years old (means = 42.91 years). The duration of pain was 1-204 months (mean = 31.20 months). The degree of severity was mild in 23.58%, moderate 45.52% and severe 30.89% of cases. Thirty-three cases were operatedon. For detection of LDH, the limited protocol gave the same interpretation results as the full protocol (theta = 1.04, 95%CI = 0.94, 1.14 with accepted range of 0.95-1.05). In nerve root compression, the limited protocol was not accurate as the full protocol (theta = 0.75, 95%CI = 0.87, 0.63). The sensitivity, specificity, accuracy, PPV, NPV and LR+ in the surgical group of limited protocol in diagnosis of LDH were 82.61%, 80%, 81.82%, 90.48%, 60.67%, 4.13 and in nerve root compression were 54.84%, 100%, 57.58%, 100%, 12.5% respectively. The same statistics of full protocol MRI in diagnosis of LDH were 82.61%, 70.80%, 78.79%, 86.36%, 63.64%, 2.75 and of nerve root compression were 80.65%, 100%, 81.82%, 100%, 25% respectively. The sensitivity and specificity in diagnosis of LDH were not different in both protocols but the sensitivity of nerve root compression was statistically significant different (p < 0.013, 95%CI = -0.33, -0.25).Conclusion: The authors concluded that limited protocol MRI may replace full protocol MRI in diagnosis of LDH but not in nerve root compression,

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The limited protocol MRI in diagnosis of lumbar disc herniation