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To MRI or not to MRI?

Hi friends I had my first set of MRIs done in late August and early September. Brain was done without contrast and was clear and cervical spine was with and without contrast and showed some spots but no definitive lesions. My neurologist wants to see me again in a few weeks and have another set of MRIs done. I still need to get my thoratic spine done because the hospital I went to in my hometown scanned my lumber spine instead!! Anyway I live in the u.s. and have a very high-deductible insurance policy. these scans are very expensive and I am torn as to whether or not I should get more scans done so soon after the ones I just had. Is 2 months enough time to show any definitive changes? Also I think I am just fearful that everything will be negative and then I will be stuck in limbo land forever. My neurologist has me on a Wellness Plan and b12 shots and high levels of vitamin D and a whole bunch of other vitamins. My energy levels have improved and I have some really good days! Unfortunately it seems like as soon as I have a good day it is followed by a bad day. Anyway I would love to hear some feedback on your experiences with MRI scans and how far apart you have had them and whether they showed any significant changes in a short period of time. Thanks!



I don't know and it reminds me of how grateful we should be that in the UK we have a National Health Service! Perhaps you ought to ask the question 'If this scan shows nothing, how soon before you would think it appropriate to re-scan? I know the scans are expensive, but don't forget that they help to determine which level of drug treatment will be best for you. It sounds as though your neuro is very pro-active and wants to get you on treatment a.s.a.p. All of which is good news, because judging from some of the posts here, some consultants have a 'wait and see' approach. Would it be possible to have a brief conversation with him and find out the risks/benefits of holding off for a few months?



I'm in the uk, and I had two sets as part of my diagnosis, approx 4 months apart, but both coincided with incidents of relapse, so my brain lit up like a Christmas tree/similar seasonal display. I would say that it's most useful when your brain/symptoms are most active, but it would depend on whether your first scan was of something active, it doesn't sound like it was. I was told I could have them less far apart had there been a space, but I was ok with 4 months in the end. I think it sounds like your neurologist wants to get as much info about your brain as possible - maybe discuss your concerns about there not being enough change and see what they say.



Hi there, MRI's are there to help with diagnosis and decisions. It sounds like you have been diagnosed already, so now MRI's need to answer questions like - should you start treatment? Should you change treatment?? It sounds odd indeed to have a MRI of your cervical spine with contrast - the contrast will show any active lesions in the whole of your CNS and it makes sense, if your having contrast, to have imaging of your brain and whole spine. Im not sure whats the point of having scans without contrast. Meanwhile, it is so important to get really healthy (I mean really healthy!) with diet (look at OMS or Waahls), exercise (not to much, definitely not too little), yoga, meditation, Vit D and anything that inspires you in a positive way. Quit smoking is you smoke, get to a good weight and move away from a western diet with all its dangers. These will take up most of your effort and time while you flow along the timeline of decisions about imaging and treatment, which ideally should start as soon as possible. Hope it all goes well and your story makes me feel so glad to have our NHS!