11 doctors weighed in:
Will I need to get an X-ray if I see a doctor for a throbbing low back pain?
11 doctors weighed in

Dr. Qamar Khan
Pain Management
3 doctors agree
In brief: Depends
Every person with back pain presents differently.
if needed the Dr. will order them.

In brief: Depends
Every person with back pain presents differently.
if needed the Dr. will order them.
Dr. Qamar Khan
Dr. Qamar Khan
Thank
2 doctors agree
In brief: Maybe
Unfortunately, xrays of the lumbar spine have a low correlation with the actual cause of the back pain.
The radiation exposure is considerable and this test should be used conservatively. Mri has a higher correlation with the cause of pain. This link may be informative: http://www.Lower-back-pain-toolkit.Com/lower-back-pain-investigations.Html.

In brief: Maybe
Unfortunately, xrays of the lumbar spine have a low correlation with the actual cause of the back pain.
The radiation exposure is considerable and this test should be used conservatively. Mri has a higher correlation with the cause of pain. This link may be informative: http://www.Lower-back-pain-toolkit.Com/lower-back-pain-investigations.Html.
Dr. Stephen Saponaro
Dr. Stephen Saponaro
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1 comment
Dr. Jay Rosenfeld
I agree, however even MRI often cannot pinpoint the source of the pain. Most people after age 30 or so will have some wear and tear findings in their spine that are not necessarily painful. This was discovered over 20 years ago in a study done at a Boston hospital in which they put 100 people without back pain through an MRI and found "abnormalities" in about 60% of them.
Dr. Jay Rosenfeld
Physical & Rehabilitation Medicine
2 doctors agree
In brief: See below
In general, for those who strain their backs occasionally, it is not necessary to do an xray or mri.
However, if i see someone whose back is not improving after about 6 weeks, i will usually order an xray first.

In brief: See below
In general, for those who strain their backs occasionally, it is not necessary to do an xray or mri.
However, if i see someone whose back is not improving after about 6 weeks, i will usually order an xray first.
Dr. Jay Rosenfeld
Dr. Jay Rosenfeld
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Dr. Ron Jones
Family Medicine
2 doctors agree
In brief: Yes
I would definitely x-ray your low back, pelvis, and hips.
Of course along with a complete history and physical and possibly other diagnostic modalities.

In brief: Yes
I would definitely x-ray your low back, pelvis, and hips.
Of course along with a complete history and physical and possibly other diagnostic modalities.
Dr. Ron Jones
Dr. Ron Jones
Thank
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