Get answers to your Spine related questions.
X-ray - lumbosacral spine; X-ray - lower spine
A lumbosacral spine x-ray is a picture of the small bones (vertebrae) in the lower part of the spine, which includes the lumbar region and the sacrum, the area that connects the spine to the pelvis.
The test is done in a hospital x-ray department or your health care provider's office by an x-ray technician. You will be asked to lie on the x-ray table in different positions. If the x-ray is being done to diagnose an injury, care will be taken to prevent further injury.
The x-ray machine will be placed over the lower part of your spine. You will be asked to hold your breath as the picture is taken so that the image will not be blurry. Usually three to five pictures are taken.
Inform the health care provider if you are pregnant. Remove all jewelry.
There is rarely any discomfort when having an x-ray, although the table may be cold.
Often, a health care provider will treat a person with low back pain for 4 to 8 weeks before ordering an x-ray.
The most common reason for lumbosacral spine x-ray is to look for the cause of low back pain that:
Stevens JM, Rich PM, Dixon AK. The spine. In: Adam A, Dixon AK, eds. Grainger & Allison's Diagnostic Radiology: A Textbook of Medical Imaging. 5th ed. New York, NY: Churchill Livingstone; 2008:chap 60.
Chou R, Qaseem A, Owens DK, Shekelle P; for the Clinical Guidelines Committee of the Amercian College of Physicians. Diagnostic imaging for low back pain: advice for high-value health care from the American College of Physicians. Ann Intern Med. 2011;154(3):181-189.
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