View Full Version : discograms

12-15-2005, 10:47 AM

I thought I had this posted right the other day....don't see my post though.

I was wondering if anyone can tell me how you get through a discogram?
I have read horrible things about it all over the internet...

I have heard when there is an annular tear, the pain in literally terrible. But then alot of people said that the versed they get during the test to calm them really makes them forget it afterward.

Exactly how can you deal with it if you are already in great pain and it hurts to lay flat and your daily pain is 8 or 9 if you can even really rate it...and then they inject that dye and it is supposedly going to send you through the roof.

Any answers on how to deal with it or even to do it all would be good.

Thank you.


01-23-2006, 09:24 PM
Hi Donna
I had 2 discograms 3 weeks ago, 1 week apart. The first was on L2/3, L3/4 and L4/5. The second was on L5/S1.
In Australia you have a Canula inserted in the back of hand where the nurse injects antibiotics prior to the procedure. After the discogram site is cleaned you will have a sedative injected through the canula. The doc will then inject local anaesthetic into the site (ouch) before inserting the discogram needle.
You should be a bit woozy from the sedative but I certainly wasn't "out of it" by any means.
If you have a bad disc it will be quite painful when the dye is injected (OK it will hurt a lot) but the ones that are OK you will only feel pressure from the dye being injected.My L4/5 is totally degenerated so it was very painful I guess I would describe it like being stabbed with a hot knife Im afraid.
Im glad I had it done though, now I know definitely which disc needs fusing.
I took pain meds after when the local wore off and the area was tender for a few days. Hope this helps and doesn't scare you too much. Cathy

03-08-2006, 03:36 PM
If anyone lives near Annapolis, Maryland it would be well worth your time to see Dr. Kerry Thompson at the Annapolis Radiology Center. I had to have a discogram done and like many of you, read so many horror stories I wanted to cry. I even asked my attending physician, Dr. Wolf of Orthopedic Institute of PA if I really needed to have this and what would happen if I didn't have it. He politely stated that if I didn't agree to have a discogram he would not be able to take my case. So I bit the bullet and went to my appointment, which is a 2 hour drive for me. I was dreading the test. Dr. Thompson is AWESOME. He inserts an IV line and administers enough Versed to put you in a "twilight sedation", you're awake but you don't really remember feeling any of the procedure. The last thing I remembered was the nurse giving me the IV Versed. After the procedure I was told that L 4/5 was pretty much shot. I honestly don't remember feeling any pain from injecting the disc with the saline and dye. It was a PAIN FREE procedure and I wouldn't hesitate to have it done again if needed. My pain management doctor told me to take one of my Actiq lozenges for the pain afterward but there was no pain and no need to take my Actiq. Email me if you have anymore questions. :D

03-09-2006, 11:47 AM
I'm worried, I have to get surgery. Does this test have to do with getting scoliosis surgery? :eek:

03-09-2006, 12:47 PM

Discograms aren't routine tests prior to scoliosis surgery. They're done in cases where it's not obvious which discs are painful.