MRI's EFFECTIVE LESS THAN HALF THE TIME IN DIAGNOSING BACK PAIN: NEW CANADIAN STUDY

Mar 26, 2013

By Jane Brown

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If you have lower back pain, an MRI may not be the best way to find out what’s causing it.

A new Canadian study found that about 44 percent of MRIs requested for the lumbar spine were appropriate and the rest were either inappropriate or of questionable value.

Lead author Dr. Derek Emery says M-R-I’s are a limited resource and if the system could reduce the number of unnecessary M-R-I’s, it would benefit people with true need who are waiting in line.

The research was conducted by clinicians from the University of Alberta, the University of Calgary, the University of Toronto, and the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute. It is published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine.

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