RN Practice Poll #4: Low Back Pain and Sciatica


Retirement-age female patient. Recent low back pain, intermittent sciatica. All initial signs normal. What tests would you order?

A 68-year-old woman presents to you with one week of right low back pain and intermittent right sided sciatica. She denies numbness, history of back pains, tingling or weakness, is generally healthy, and is on no medications.

Physical exam shows limited range of motion of the LS spine. Her neurological exam is normal.

See also:

Practice Poll #1: Your Strategy After MTX Fails in RAPractice Poll #2: MTX Plus Anti-TNF Fails in RA. What Next?Practice Poll #3: Managing Stage IV Lupus Nephritis


Which of the following would you order?

Plain X ray of the lumbar spine
MRI of the lumbar spine
CAT scan of the lumbar spine
No imaging study
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