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J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2011 Nov;41(11):847. doi: 10.2519/jospt.2011.0507. Epub 2011 Oct 31.

JOSPT perspectives for patients. Low back pain: MRIs should be used sparingly in patients with low back pain.

[No authors listed]


Low back pain is very common, with 80% of people experiencing back pain at least once in their lifetimes. The good news is that a thorough physical examination can often determine the best course of management and whether you require imaging to rule out a serious problem. Often low back pain can be severe enough to make a patient think that an MRI is necessary. While MRI provides excellent pictures of your anatomy, it may not be able to pinpoint the specific source of your pain. A clinical commentary published in the November 2011 issue of JOSPT summarizes research that describes how the increased use of unnecessary imaging may lead to less than favorable results.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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