Complications of cervical discography: Analysis of 4400 diagnostic disc injections

Seth M. Zeidman, Kerry Thompson, Thomas B. Ducker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

DESPITE EXTENSIVE EXPERIENCE with diagnostic cervical disc injection, the role of this procedure in the evaluation of patients with degenerative disc disease and severe neck pain remains controversial. Beyond the debate regarding its efficacy in identifying the site of cervical symptomatology and directing appropriate intervention are the potential morbidity and mortality associated with this diagnostic procedure. Discitis, subdural empyema, spinal cord injury, vascular injury, and prevertebral abscess have all been reported as complications of diagnostic cervical disc injection. Any meaningful assessment of the role of cervical discography in the evaluation of degenerative disc disease must include a determination of the risks inherent in the procedure. We retrospectively analyzed 4400 cervical disc injections in 1357 patients performed by an experienced radiologist between 1988 and 1993 to define the morbidity and mortality associated with discography. In addition, we reviewed the extant medical literature on the complications of this controversial procedure. This study demonstrates significant complications from diagnostic discography procedures occurring in less than 0.6% of the patients and 0.16% of the cervical disc injections.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)414-417
Number of pages4
JournalNeurosurgery
Volume37
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1995

Keywords

  • Cervical spine
  • Complications
  • Discography
  • Radiculopathy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Complications of cervical discography: Analysis of 4400 diagnostic disc injections'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this