Dynamic Chiropractic - September 12, 1995, Volume 13, Issue 19|
Here's Looking at You
The diagnosis of what is causing back pain is often made by interpreting x-rays. But the type of health care provider interpreting those films may have a great influence on what is found (or missed). When various providers were tested for the ability to interpret abnormal lumbosacral spine radiographs, here is how they placed:
(horizontal graphs using x-ray graphic in different colors)
Provider Group Average correct
Chiropractic Radiologist - 71%
Skeletal Radiologist & Fellows - 70.18%
Chiropractic Radiology Residents - 61.54%
General Medical Radiologists - 51.64%
Medical Radiology Residents - 44.64%
Medical Clinicians - 31.26%
Chiropractic Clinicians - 28.38%
Chiropractic Students - 20.45%
Medical Students - 5.74%While one would expect a difference between the provider groups, specialists appear to be twice as accurate as non-specialists.
----------------------------- SOURCE: Taylor JAM, et al. Interpretation of abnormal lumbosacral spine radiographs. Spine 1995;20:1147-1154.