Parseh Medical Imaging Center, Tehran. Iran
Paytakht Medical Imaging Center, Tehran. Iran
Hacettepe University Medical School, Ankara. Turkey
Başkent University Medical School, Ankara. Turkey
Back pain is a prevalent medical condition that affects people of all ages and backgrounds. However, as experienced radiologists know, interpreting spinal MRI findings may not be as straightforward as it may seem. It requires a profound understanding of various factors, such as damage to skin, muscles, and ligaments, anomalies in facet joints and their orientation, and DJD changes in vertebral bodies. Additionally, discopathies, adjacent vessels and nerves, and disorders of the abdominopelvic structures from the infracostal level superiorly to the inferior gluteal folds inferiorly can all contribute to back pain.
Furthermore, the leading causes of low back pain, such as disk bulge, disk protrusion, and even disk extrusion, are also visualized in asymptomatic persons and are not specific findings. Additionally, approximately 30% of patients with clinical symptoms may have normal MRI or CT scans in the supine position. Therefore, it is crucial for radiologists to understand the limitations, pitfalls, and solutions associated with these issues.
ItisworthmentioningthatSpinalMechanical instability is the most common cause of chronic back pain. Therefore, radiologists must have a comprehensive understanding of this concept, its interpretation, and its diagnosis techniques.
Radiologists› familiarity with the considerations mentioned above is vital in interpreting MRI findings in patients with back pain. This understanding can help prevent unnecessary medical procedures and surgeries and improve the accuracy of MRI interpretations, ultimately leading to better outcomes for patients.