What Do Findings On X-Rays And MRIs Actually Mean?

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What do findings on X-rays and MRIs actually mean? While imaging is helpful and definitely needed at times, the radiologic reports can often sound scarier than the process that is actually occurring.

As imaging techniques have advanced, healthcare professionals have fallen into a pattern of labelling normal tissue changes as problematic or unhealthy. For example, “degenerative disc disease”, certain types of “arthritic” changes, etc, are normal occurrences as we age and aren’t always related to pain.

Many of these types of changes are now being thought of as “wrinkles on the inside”. The well known biomechanics researcher Stu McGill has a quote – “a degenerative disc disease diagnosis is the equivalent of telling your mother in law that she has degenerative face disease” Keep this in mind the next time you or anyone you know encounter this, and make sure to see an optimistic medical professional who can properly interpret the situation for you

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