The problem with MRIs in many situations of back pain, shoulder pain, knee pain, etc is that the results of an MRI don't often show what is causing the pain the person is experiencing. And MRIs can show abnormalities that have nothing to do with the person's pain sometimes leading to unnecessary, costly and dangerous surgery.
- MRI's of healthy people with no pain or symptoms often show abnormalities like disc herniations, meniscus tears, or rotator cuff tears.
- MRI's of people with pain and symptoms often show no abnormalities.
- A person's pain and the abnormalities shown on an MRI often don't correlate. For example, a larger herniation doesn't mean more pain than a small herniation.