Table of Contents
ISRN Neuroscience
Volume 2013, Article ID 952570, 4 pages
Clinical Study

Magnetic Resonance Imaging versus Electrophysiologic Tests in Clinical Diagnosis of Lower Extremity Radicular Pain

Orthopedic Department, Orthopedic Research Center, Emam Reza Hospital, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad 9186611111, Iran

Received 11 December 2012; Accepted 1 January 2013

Academic Editors: J. H. Huang and M. Knikou

Copyright © 2013 E. G. Hasankhani and F. Omidi-Kashani. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Introduction. Radicular low back pain is one of the most common medical problems. The aim of this study was to evaluate the diagnostic accuracy of MRI and electrodiagnosis in lower extremity radicular pain in relation to history and clinical findings. Methods. In this cross-sectional study, we studied 165 sciatalgic subjects. A comprehensive history and physical examinations were taken from the subjects and recorded, and then MRI scanning and electrodiagnostic (nerve conduction velocity and electromyography) tests were performed. Results. From 152 subjects who remained in the study, 67 cases (44.1%) had radicular pain in left lower limb, 46 (30.3%) in right, and 39 (25.6%) in both lower limbs. 104 cases (68.4%) had shown some type of abnormalities in both MRI and electrodiagnosis, 30 (19.7%) had shown this abnormality only in MRI, and 21 (13.8%) only in electrodiagnosis, while 10 cases (6.5%) had both normal MRI and electrodiagnostic studies. Coordination rates of MRI and electrodiagnosis with clinical findings were 58.6% and 89.5%, respectively. Conclusion. In many MRI negative but symptomatic subjects, electrodiagnosis has an important diagnostic value.