Chiari Online Support Group

Upright MRI v Supine MRI


Has anyone ever had both an upright and a supine MRI? If so, was your herniation different?

I originally started having symptoms back in 2015 after a chiropractor manipulated my neck. I started to have massive headache/migraines, cognitive fuzz. Then a multitude of symptoms began to progress after that and are still around.

In 2016 (May) I had a supine MRI, it read my herniation was 4mm. So it was technically diagnosed as a ‘cerebral tonsillar ectopia’.

In 2017 (November) I had an upright MRI. My Chiari herniation read 6.9mm, which the technician then noted a possible Chiari 1 Malformation (you could visibly see it was slightly longer and more pegged than before)

The last couple weeks I have been at Mayo due to the fact that doctors back home in Chicago weren’t sure what was wrong with me. They have sent my through the ringer of tests, x-rays, blood/urine, balance, audio, ECG, echocardiogram, and more. My body checks out that it’s working autonomously as it should.

Mayo ended up doing another laying down MRI in addition to a CINE MRI laying down. My herniation was measured at 4.5mm so now Mayo says I don’t have a Chiari.

Has anyone else had an experience like this?

I am still having symptoms but I have found they are far worse in the fall and winter times. The main position that triggers my symptoms is when I’m at a desk writing, chopping up food cooking, coughing, looking down at something on a lower shelf, turning to look out the window of he bus or to look at someone while talking, and many more. When my symptoms are elevated and sensitive, even nodding my head in agreement hurts. In addition to nausea, vomiting, cognition issues, pain and all else. I am having troubles sitting on anything that isn’t an absolute solid 90 degreee surface. It feels almost as if my spine isn’t straight and solidly supported (can’t sit on couches) it feels like it’s pulling down, along with everything inside (if that even makes any sense.)

I don’t know what else to do, I am ready to just give up talking to doctors because I’m feeling more crazy than I am finding relief…:confused:


I know this is from a long time ago. I just wanted to drop in and although I don’t have answers for you, I can say that Mayo Clinic was less than helpful with my Chiari. They diagnosed me Conversion Disorder and pretty much that was it. Sending good vibes.