Spinal Stenosis Diagnosis

If you’re suffering from back pain, particularly lower back pain or neck pain, you might have spinal stenosis. You’re going to need Fletcher Allen’s team of experts who can get you the help you need so you can start feeling better right away.

Spinal Stenosis Diagnosis

Our neurological imaging specialists – called neuroradiologists – work closely with your care team. They help determine the best tests for your condition. These professionals are specially trained in conducting brain imaging studies to detect the presence of a tumor. 

Our neuroradiologists use a wide range of imaging technologies including diagnostic X-ray, CT or CAT scans, MRI, nuclear medicine and ultrasound. You’ll have access to some of the highest levels of expertise and technology anywhere in the country. Fletcher Allen’s goal is to ensure a high level of accuracy in screening and diagnosis for you and your family. 

Diagnosing spinal stenosis may involve the following:

  • Physical exam – Your specialist will conduct a thorough physical exam and medical history. He or she will examine your range of motion, muscle strength and reflexes. The specialist will also assess your balance, ability to feel pain and ability to walk, among other factors. 
  • X-rays – An x-ray may be taken to help rule out other problems with the spine, such as a fracture or bone tumor, which may cause similar symptoms. 
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) –An MRI uses magnetic fields and radio waves to produce cross-sectional images of your body. Fletcher Allen offers the latest technology in Open MRI, offering a comfortable option for patients who prefer an open setting. This test can identify damage to the disks and ligaments, as well as any pressure on the spinal cord or nerves. 
  • CT (computed tomography) myelogram – This test uses x-ray images from many angles to create detailed, cross-section images of the body. Fletcher Allen offers some of the most advanced CT technology available today, including a 64-slice CT scanner, capable of imaging organs in the body within seconds. With this test, a liquid dye is injected into the spinal column before the CT scan is taken. It can show pressure on the spinal cord and nerves, and reveal the presence of herniated discs, bone tumors or bone spurs.

Learn about spinal stenosis treatment.

Find a Fletcher Allen Health Care physician or call 802-847-4590.