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Objective:This study is aimed to evaluate the chemonucleolytic effect of medical ozone by investigating the change of the signal intensity on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan after injection of medical ozone into the lumbar intervertebral disc of the rabbit. Methods : A series of 21 intradiscal injections of 1ml of medical ozone(30㎍ of ozone per ml of oxygen) was performed in 7 young adult rabbits. Two control series, which 20 intradiscal injections of 0.1ml of iodine contrast medium in 7 young adult rabbits and 21 intradiscal injections of 0.05ml of chymopapain in 7 young adult rabbits, were performed. T2 weighted MRI scan was performed pre-operatively and at 4 weeks after injection. Results : T2-weighted MRI scan of intervertebral disc spaces demonstrated significantly decreased signal intensities in the series (n=21) of intradiscal injections of medical ozone at 4 weeks after injection, as compared with the control series of intradiscal injections of 0.1ml of iodine contrast medium. T2-weighted MRI scan of intervertebral disc spaces demonstrated significantly decreased signal intensities in the series(n=21) of intradiscal injections of chymopapain at 4 weeks after injection. Any neurologic deficit or complication was not found in all groups. Conclusion : Intradiscal injections of medical ozone into the lumbar intervertebral disc of the rabbits are proven to have chemonucleolytic effects. Key words:Chemonucleolysis;Intervertebral disc;Lumbar spine;MRI scan;Ozone;Rabbit.