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Thread: MRI-thecal sac compresion at C3

  1. #1

    MRI-thecal sac compresion at C3

    I used to be a test drive pilot and I had a lot of car accidents (not all checked by doctors) Because during the last year I noticed that I was loosing my sight progressively, I decided to take an MRI. The results were like this:
    - prolapsed C3 intervertebral disc, with minimal thecal sac compression and no radicular contact;
    - no stenosis of the spinal canal;
    - cervical spinal cord with normal MRI aspect
    I went to a neurologist and he said that my vision problems could not be caused by the C3 issue. The ophthalmologist suggested that I ask for a second opinion.
    So, can a mild thecal sac compression at C3, with no radicular compression, cause vision impairment that needs new glasses prescription every 3-4 months?

  2. #2
    No clear way that this mild C3 change could be contributing to your visual problems. Although a brain MRI is what you need - not a spine MRI.

    It sounds like what you may also need is a second opinion by another ophthalmologist.

  3. #3
    The brain MRI is normal. Also I had a brain MRI last year with contrast substance and everything was ok. I also thought that if the C3 was a problem I should have had pain in my arms or neck.

  4. #4
    Your MRI of your neck is relatively normal. Refraction changes do not occur due to spinal cord damage, but can be related to brain injury (which may not show up on MRI) or simply aging. What does your optholmologist say??


  5. #5
    No, the spine doesn't control your vision. What does your eye exam show?
    Why don't you get a second opinion of an opthalmologist? What were your pressures? Glaucoma? Diabetes?

  6. #6
    About two years ago (at the age of 39) I was found to have astigmatism. At first the left eye was a bit affected and the right one was fine. During the last 8 months my vision began decreasing rapidly and I had to change my glasses once, then get contact lenses for astigmatism and now I am back on glasses. I can say that today, if I don't wear my glasses, with the left eye I can barely distinguish objects and my right eye is not perfect either. Ophthalmologists I visited can't explain this fast decreasing in vision. The brain blood flow seems to be normal.

    I thought that maybe the C3 is compressing on a vein or artery when I stand up. During the MRI, because I am laying down maybe the head and the gravity don't apply so much pressure on the C3 as when standing up and the results shown might not be that adequate...

  7. #7
    You have minimal impingement. The blood vessel that is immediately next to the disk is a descending artery that feeds the spinal cord, not the brain. Compression of that artery would cause problems with your arms and legs, bowel, bladder and sexual functioning...not vision changes. Refractive changes are due to changes in the eye itself, and rarely due to brain lesions. Field cuts, blurring, and other vision changes can be due to brain lesions. I don't see any way that what you describe could be the reason you also have these vision changes. I would suggest getting more opinions from optholomogists.


  8. #8
    Thank you for all these great answers. At least I got one thing cleared out. I will look for another ophthalmologist's opinion.

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