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Thirty five women consented post partum to daily lumbar back pain assessments and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) (0.15 Tesla) within 48 hours of delivery using a T1 weighted spin echo and a fat suppression sequence (STIR) to identify tissue water.
Nine women (26%) had lumbar disc abnormalities on MRI scan.
Variable degrees of soft tissue changes in the lumbar region were observed using the STIR sequence in all patients after delivery. Eight women (23%) had mild, 15 (43%) moderate, and 12 (34%) severe changes with an average of 5 segments involved. These changes were reversible and related neither to the mode of delivery, nor to the trauma of epidural cannulation.
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