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BACKGROUND፡ Neck pain is a common health problem throughout the world causing significant individual disability and economic burden on health care facility. Many factors are mentioned as a cause or association in relation to neck pain, of which degenerative and posttraumatic cause are the main ones. The aim of this study is to assess cervical spine Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) patterns in patients presented with neck pain.
METHODS: A retrospective analysis of 160 patients who had cervical spine Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) for evaluation of a neck pain was done. The study was conducted between February to August 2018 at Tikur Anbessa Specialized Hospital. The patients’ clinical history and magnetic resonance imaging reports were reviewed from their medical records. All patients who have cervical spine Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) for a neck pain were included in the study. Those patients with acute traumatic neck pain were excluded.
RESULTS: From a total of 160 patients, 71(44.4%) were males and 89(55.6%) were females. Degenerative cervical spine findings such as intervertebral disc degenerations were seen in 127(79.4%) patients. Non-degenerative imaging findings such as neoplasm and infection were seen in 10(6.3%) patients only. The MRI was normal in 23(14.4%) of them.
CONCLUSION: The most common cause of neck pain from this study is degenerative changes of the cervical spine, which was predominant in the older age groups. Non-degenerative causes such as neoplasm and infection were less common findings.