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Lumbar Spine MRIs ‘Frequently Inappropriate’
Health Leaders Media

In Canada, more than half the requests for MRI scans of patients’ lumbar spines were “substantially” inappropriate or of uncertain value, a finding the study’s author says is probably even greater in the United States.

“The thing about Canada is that we have limited access to MRI, whereas in the United States, effectively, you don’t have limits for people who can afford it; there’s no waiting list and no limitations on access,” says Derek J. Emery, MD, associate professor and neuroradiologist at the University of Alberta, and principal author of the paper published Monday as a Research Letter in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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