Do referrals from general practice to lumbar MRI scan follow the recommendations of the clinical guidelines?

The results of this study contribute to the understanding of and approach to lumbar MRI scans among primary care clinicians treating low back pain.
All referrals from general practitioners in the Central Jutland Region to lumbar MRI scans at a public regional hospital from 2014 to 2018 were included in the study.
55% of the referrals for MRI scan of the lower back were selected and a total of 2051 referrals were categorized.
75.5% of GPs' referrals for lumbar MRI scan did not meet the criteria for MRI scan of the lower back due to the unstructured text in the referrals. Referrals to MRI scans need to include all relevant information and more research to determine if this is due to patients not meeting the guidelines' recommendations or the content of the referrals.

Krogh SB, Jensen TS, Rolving N, Thomsen JNL, Hansen CB, Werenberg CH, Rasmussen E, Carlson R, Jensen RK.Appropriateness of referrals from primary care for lumbar MRI. Chiropractic & Manual Therapies 2022.