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What does an MRI of the neck show?

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Quick Answer

An MRI of the neck shows a wide range of important anatomy and disorders in the neck region. The structures shown include bones, muscles, veins, arteries and connective tissue.

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An abnormal MRI is most common when there is a herniated or slipped disc in the neck. Two other major findings are narrowing of the spine in the neck region and abnormal wear of the bones and cartilage in the neck. The MRI may also show bone infection, disc inflammation and spinal infection. Other findings may indicate that there is a spinal fracture, a spinal tumor or a spinal cord injury. An MRI of the neck may also show that multiple sclerosis is present.

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