The assumption that high tech holds high hope for treating back pain may be the greatest contributor to society's neck and back pain epidemic. This myth is responsible for upward spiraling costs without producing any measurable patient benefits. In patients who have red flags for severe spinal compromise, high-tech diagnostic and therapeutic procedures are warranted and can offer miraculous benefits. But in the 95 percent of uncomplicated cases, high-tech procedures -- including computerized axial tomography (CAT) scans, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and electro-diagnostic testing -- have produced few patient benefits.
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