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Paulette Hugulet, DC, LLC Calmly Considers MRIs Modic Changes

“Your MRI shows some Modic changes.” Paulette Hugulet, DC, LLC says “Do not panic too much.” Our La Grande back pain and neck pain patients are in good company regarding MRI reports reporting Modic changes. The research is evolving about just what MRI-documented Modic changes mean for a patient..and what they do not. Paulette Hugulet, DC, LLC creates some perspective about these common MRI findings.


“Modic changes” is a phrase used to describe the changes of the spine’s vertebral endplates which are related to spinal degeneration. Modic type I changes are basically considered to be bone marrow edema and inflammation signifying acute degenerative changes.  Modic type II changes signify fatty degeneration of the bone marrow. Modic III changes describe the replacement of bone with bony sclerosis with little bone marrow left. (1) Paulette Hugulet, DC, LLC likes the opportunity to treat a painful back earlier in this cascade of change whenever possible. Paulette Hugulet, DC, LLC treats disc degeneration and spinal degenerative changes.


Modic changes are familiar findings on MRI. Modic changes on MRI are seen in spinal degenerative diseases and are greatly associated with low back pain. (1) They are age-related degenerative findings that come with disc degeneration. Greater Modic changes were tied to higher age, higher body mass index, and adjacent disc degeneration. (2) Lifestyle and occupational factors like cigarette smoking, regular exercise, and absence of daily vehicle vibration seemed to have minor effects, if any, on the development of Modic changes in the lumbar spine. (3) Clearly, Paulette Hugulet, DC, LLC urges proper lifestyle choices for optimal health!


What is unclear is the research about just what Modic changes mean for back pain patients. Recent research showed that Modic changes were not found to be negatively associated with long-term pain, disability, or sick leave. The study stated that low back pain patients with Modic changes had significantly less disability and sick-leave at long-term follow-up. (4) This is encouraging info to our La Grande chiropractic back pain patients!

CONTACT Paulette Hugulet, DC, LLC

Listen to this PODCAST with Dr. Robert Rudy on The Back Doctors’ Podcast with Dr. Michael Johnson who described his treatment plan with the Cox® Technic System for their back pain relief to his patients so they understand.

Schedule your La Grande chiropractic appointment now. Bring your MRIs with you. Together, Paulette Hugulet, DC, LLC and you will study them for information and develop a treatment plan for La Grande back pain relief that will keep us both from panicking!

Paulette Hugulet, DC, LLC sees many back pain and neck pain patients who bring their MRIs with them to the office. Modic changes are often seen.  
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"This information and website content is not intended to diagnose, guarantee results, or recommend specific treatment or activity. It is designed to educate and inform only. Please consult your physician for a thorough examination leading to a diagnosis and well-planned treatment strategy. See more details on the DISCLAIMER page. Content is reviewed by Dr. James M. Cox I."