MRIs for Low Back Pain
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Imaging scans like MRIs don't help doctors decide how to treat back pain – the prescription is almost always rest and anti-inflammatories. But MRIs can lead doctors to find what seem to be abnormalities – such as a bulging disk that has nothing to do with your pain – which sometimes results in unnecessary surgery. As a rule of thumb, don't have an MRI until you've had pain for at least six weeks.