Discography is a diagnostic test used to determine which specific disc(s) are causing the patient’s pain. It is NOT a therapeutic procedure. During the procedure, needles are placed into the center of multiple discs and then the discs are injected with fluid or dye to pressurize or distend the disc. By adding pressure to the inside of the damaged disc, the disc is stimulated and the nerves that are normally causing the patient’s pain will be activated, in other words the patient’s pain will be reproduced. Discs which are not causing the patient’s pain will not have a painful response to this pressure. Following the injection the patient will undergo a CT scan and this will show how the dye that was injected spread through the disc. By examining what has happened to the dye following injection, we are able to see the size and location of tears (and herniations) in the disc. Discography helps the physician to plan minimally invasive spine surgery and surgical fusion procedures. Many patients will have already undergone an MRI and often wonder why this procedure is necessary. MRIs provide a good picture of the disc; but discography tells us which of the discs is causing the pain as sometimes discs appear damaged on an MRI, but they are not actually causing the patient’s pain.