Author(s): Walker J rd, El Abd O, Isaac Z, Muzin S
Abstract Share this page
Abstract Chronic low back pain is the most common cause of disability in individuals between the ages of 45 and 65. Given the variety of anatomic and pathophysiologic causes of persistent low back pain, it is a difficult diagnosis for clinicians to treat. Discography is a diagnostic option that may link a patient's subjective complaints of spinal pain to symptomatic disk disease when non-invasive imaging, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), does not find structural abnormalities. A controversial procedure, discography is only necessary to assess painful discs prior to surgical interventions. For accurate discogram interpretation an experienced spine interventionalist must be careful to exclude false positive results and be aware of the patient's underlying psychological state. This literature review will discuss the following: anatomy and function of the spine and intervertebral disc, intervertebral disc degeneration and discogenic pain, history of discography, indications and contraindications, a description of the procedure, complications, and the current debate regarding its outcomes.
This article was published in Curr Rev Musculoskelet Med
and referenced in Anatomy & Physiology: Current Research