Examination of Low Back Pain Periprocedural Care

Updated: Oct 21, 2022
  • Author: Bradley J Sandella, DO, ATC; Chief Editor: Vinod K Panchbhavi, MD, FACS, FAOA, FABOS, FAAOS  more...
  • Print
Periprocedural Care

Pre-Procedure Planning

Prior to patient contact, the physician should properly wash his or her hands. To complete a proper lumbar spine examination, the physician should be prepared to examine not only the low back but also bilateral hips and both lower extremities.



The examination room needs to be spacious to allow for the patient to move freely. It should also contain a full-length sturdy examination table that will allow the patient to sit comfortably and to lie prone and supine. In addition, a stool on wheels will allow the physician to move easily around the room. The physician should be equipped with a measuring tape, goniometer, and reflex hammer.


Patient Preparation

Proper patient exposure is critical to any musculoskeletal examination, including evaluation of the spine. Shoes, socks, shirt, and pants need to be replaced with examination shorts and t-shirt or an examination gown. The patient should be given an additional sheet for leg coverage.