Posterior lumbar subcutaneous oedema is a very frequent finding on MRI of spine. A clinical correlation is almost always required to identify the significance of this.
- overweight (raised BMI)
- age (advancing age)
- sex (more common in females)
- posterior compartment degenerative changes (facet arthropathy)
- infectious process
- neoplastic causes
It is the same appearance as that of oedema elsewhere in the body.
- T2 and STIR: hyperintense signal
- T1: hypointense signal
Due to its distribution it is sometimes referred to as tramp-stamp oedema.