A myelogram is a diagnostic imaging procedure that enables neuroradiologists to obtain highly detailed images of the spinal canal contents. A physician may order a myelogram if MRI cannot be performed or to supplement or clarify findings seen on MRI.
During the procedure, you will lie face down on the procedure table. After administration of local anesthesia, a thin needle is inserted into the spinal canal and contrast is injected into the spinal fluid. You may be secured to a table which can tilt in order to facilitate migration of contrast to the desired areas of imaging. Images of the spine are then obtained using x-rays and computed tomography (CT).
The procedure is generally performed with local anesthesia and expected procedural time is 15-30 minutes, though this varies based on patient anatomy and prior surgery.
What are the Associated Risks and Complications?
With any procedure, risks such as bleeding or infection at the injection site can occur. Additional risks of the procedure will be discussed by the performing radiologist and nursing staff prior to the procedure.