Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a diagnostic examination that relies on the variation of magnetic fields and makes it possible to view body structures without the use of ionizing radiation.

Following a specialist examination, Dr. Giuliano Lo Bianco can prescribe an MRI to be carried out in Palermo at the hospital or at the Fondazione Istituto G. Giglio in Cefalú. Giglio in Cefalú, in cases of acute and/or chronic spinal pain, the MRI is in fact prescribed for a correct aetiological diagnosis (e.g. herniated discs,) pathological or traumatic lesions.

To perform the MRI, it is necessary that the patient does not have any metallic devices implanted, unless they are compatible. If a pace-maker is present, the MRI cannot usually be performed unless it can be deactivated during the procedure.

The most common pathologies, which manifest themselves with acute or chronic pain, are those affecting the spine, and in these cases an MRI of the spine, also known as magnetic resonance imaging of the spine, or simply column MRI, is prescribed.

However, it is also possible to perform this type of diagnostic examination in individual areas of the body or spine, in the latter case we will speak of MRI of the spine, which can be divided into cervical, thoracic, lumbar, sacral and coccygeal, the most frequent of which include:

which analyses the state of the discs of the seven vertebrae that make up the cervical spine, C1 to C7. It is also possible to examine a single portion by dividing the cervical spine into upper (C1-C2) and lower (C3-C7); this technique is indispensable in the diagnosis of spondylolisthesis or to rule out injuries due to trauma such as the common ‘whiplash’ from a car accident.

on the other hand, examines the soft and solid tissues of the area of the spine between L1-L5 and the sacrum; again, it is possible to divide the regions, analysing only one portion; this technique is necessary to investigate the origin of chronic sciatica from herniated discs and in the diagnosis of spinal defects such as spina bifida or the presence of perineural cysts.

sometimes preparatory to an arthroscopy of the same, includes the examination of the end of the femur and the beginning of the tibia and fibula, which are joined anteriorly by the patella, meniscus, patellar tendon and anterior and posterior cruciate ligament; within this structure we find the articular cartilage.
An MRI of this joint complex is usually prescribed in the presence of symptoms such as severe stiffness, joint weakness and instability, swelling and/or acute pain, as well as in cases of trauma. MRI of the knee is also useful in the diagnosis of osteomyelitis, an infection of the bone that can degenerate into necrosis and cause pathological fractures if not diagnosed in time.


Radiography is a diagnostic examination that allows the visualisation of bone lesions (trauma and bone diseases). It is a widely used diagnostic technique due to its ease of execution and widespread use and remains the first level investigation in the evaluation of bone lesions.

If necessary, Dr. Giuliano Lo Bianco can prescribe an X-ray to be performed in Palermo at an affiliated centre or at the Istituto G. Giglio Foundation in Cefalù. Giglio Foundation in Cefalù, both for any abnormalities of the vertebral bodies, in the case of a column X-ray, and a knee X-ray to assess any traumatic injuries.

is indicated to investigate any alterations in the natural curves of the spinal column in the axial planes (kyphosis, lordosis, scoliosis), any abnormalities in the vertebral bodies and the presence of trauma, injuries, congenital anomalies or degenerative processes (e.g. collapses, osteoporotic and/or pathological fractures).

is a quick and easy examination indicated in the search for traumatic injuries, osteoarthritis or morphological changes in one or more joint components.


CT or computed tomography is a diagnostic imaging examination that involves, like radiography, the use of X-rays to scan the affected area; CT, unlike X-rays, is capable of reconstructing images in three dimensions. CT scan of the spinal column is a very frequently used CT examination to investigate the origin of painful pathologies of the spinal column, but also the possible presence of metastases or traumatic lesions; this examination has a high sensitivity in detecting this type of lesions thanks to its high resolution power (a few millimetres). The CT scan of the spine can be performed in its various sections: cervical, dorsal and lumbosacral. The lumbosacral CT scan is one of the most frequently prescribed because the lumbosacral section is the one most prone to degeneration from arthrotic and traumatic pathology, and the neuralgia and neuropathies of the joints in this area are among the most disabling, so it is necessary to have as detailed an anatomical view as possible and to intervene promptly.


Electromyography (EMG) is an examination used in neurological diagnostics and evaluates nerve impulse transmission in the examined area (upper and/or lower limbs).

EMG is a procedure that is often preliminary to the start of pain therapy, as it allows, together with CT and MRI, the diagnosis of neuralgia and neuropathy. Upper limb electromyography is indicated for the diagnosis of cervicobrachialgia due to herniated discs, carpal tunnel syndrome and peripheral neuropathies. Lower-limb electromyography is indicated for the aetiological diagnosis of lower-limb neuropathies (e.g. lumbosciatica due to herniated discs). An electromyography examination can be performed in Palermo or at the Fondazione Istituto G. Giglio in Cefalú, with a prescription from Dr Giuliano Lo Bianco.

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