MRI 2� X More Likely to get Surgery
Reference:Jarvik JG, et al Rapid magnetic resonance imaging vs radiographs for patients with low back pain: a randomized controlled trial. JAMA. 2003 Jun 4;289(21):2810-8.
In this RCT 380 patients with low back pain (LBP) were randomly assigned to receive either plain x-rays or an MRI.
After 1 year, there were no significant differences in all the measured outcomes except for the fact that, 4 patients in the x-ray group versus 10 in the MRI group had lumbar spine surgery.
Clinical Relevance: Although both patients and physicians prefer an MRI to plain x-ray, an MRI doesn’t seem to offer additional benefit to patients, other than increasing the chances of undergoing an operation!
Posted on: December 15, 2011
Categories: Lumbar Spine