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Eur Spine J. 2009 Jul;18(7):1035-40. doi: 10.1007/s00586-009-0938-4. Epub 2009 Mar 18.

Diagnosis and surgical treatment of back pain originating from endplate.

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  • 1Department of Spinal Surgery, Institute of Spinal Surgery, General Hospital of Armed Police Force, 100039, Beijing, People's Republic of China.


Twenty-one patients with back pain originating from the endplate injuries were selected to explore the methods of diagnosis and surgical treatment. All patients underwent examinations using radiography, CT, and MR imaging. Pain level of disc was determined through discography in each patient. The principal outcome judgments were pain and disability, and the efficacy of surgical treatment was assessed through the use of the visual analog scale (VAS) for pain and the Oswestry disability index (ODI) for functional recovery. All 21 patients with a diagnosis of back pain originating from endplate injuries according to discography were treated with anterior or posterior fusion surgery. The mean follow-up period was 3 years and 5 months (range, 2-6 years). Of the 21 patients, 20 (20/21) reported a disappearance or marked alleviation of low back pain and experienced a definite improvement in physical function. Statistically significant and clinically meaningful improvements in the VAS and ODI scores were obtained after treatment in the patients with chronic low back pain originating from the endplate injuries (P = 0.0001). The study suggests that discography and fusion surgery may be very effective methods for the diagnosis and treatment, respectively, of chronic back pain originating from the endplate injuries.

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