Myelography is most commonly used to detect abnormalities affecting
the spinal cord, the spinal canal, the spinal nerve roots and the blood
vessels that supply the spinal cord, including:
* to show whether a herniation of the intervertebral disk between the
* successive vertebral bodies is compressing the nerve roots or the
* spinal cord.
* to depict a condition that often accompanies degeneration of the
* bones and soft tissues surrounding the spinal canal, termed spinal
* stenosis. In this condition, the spinal canal narrows as the surrounding
* tissues enlarge due to the development of bony spurs (osteophytes)
* and thickening of the adjacent ligaments.
Myelography can also be used to assess the following conditions when
MR imaging cannot be performed, or in addition to MRI:
* tumors involving the bony spine, meninges, nerve roots or spinal cord
* infection involving the bony spine, intervertebral discs, meninges and
* surrounding soft tissues
* inflammation of the arachnoid membrane that covers the spinal cord
* spinal lesions caused by disease or trauma
A myelogram can show whether surgical treatment is promising in a
given case and, if it is, can help in planning surgery.