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  • Cynthia M. Johnson, MA
Publication Type:





Discography is an imaging test of the spine. It uses contrast material and x-ray.

Herniated Lumbar Disc.

Nucleus factsheet imagehttp://services.epnet.com/getimage.aspx?imageiid=27252725FX00004.jpgLumbar Disc Herniation with Pinching of Spinal NerveNULLjpgLumbar Disc Herniation with Pinching of Spinal NerveNULL\\filer01\Intellect\images\FX00004.jpgCopyright © 2002 Nucleus Communications, Inc. All rights reserved.49NULL2002-10-012352202725_222148280390Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

Reasons for Test

This test is done to find the cause of back pain, such as an abnormal disc. Discs are the small, circular cushions between the bones in the spine.

Possible Complications

Problems are rare, but all procedures have some risk. The doctor will go over some problems that could happen, such as:

  • Infection
  • Injury to nerves or blood vessels around the spine
  • Allergic reaction to the contrast agent or anesthesia

What to Expect

Call Your Doctor

Call the doctor if you are not getting better or you have:

  • Signs of infection, such as fever and chills
  • Swelling or discharge from the injection site
  • Pain that you cannot control with medicine
  • Numbness or weakness in the legs
  • Nausea or vomiting

If you think you have an emergency, call for medical help right away.





  • Chronic low back pain. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/chronic-low-back-pain. Accessed September 29, 2020.
  • Discography (discogram). Radiological Society of North America Radiology Info website. Available at: https://www.radiologyinfo.org/en/info.cfm?pg=discography. Accessed September 29, 2020.
  • Last AR, Hulbert K. Chronic low back pain: evaluation and management. Am Fam Physician. 2009 Jun 15;79(12):1067-1074.


  • Warren A. Bodine, DO, CAQSM
Last Updated:

This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.