Lumbosacral spine x-ray - Results
X-ray - lumbosacral spine; X-ray - lower spine
What abnormal results mean:
Lumbosacral spine x-rays may show:
- Abnormal curves of the spine
- Abnormal wear on the cartilage and bones of the lower spine, such as bone spurs and narrowing of the joints between the vertebrae
- Cancer (although cancer often cannot be seen on this type of x-ray)
- Signs of thinning bones (osteoporosis)
- Spondylolisthesis, in which a bone (vertebra) in the lower part of the spine slips out of the proper position onto the bone below it
Though some of these findings may be seen on an x-ray, they are not always caused by a person's back.
Many problems in the spine cannot be diagnosed using a lumbosacral x-ray, including:
- Reviewed last on: 2/7/2011
- Linda Vorvick, MD, Family Physician, Medical Director, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
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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