An Analysis of Differential Epidural Spinal Anesthesia and Pentothal Pain Study in the Differential Diagnosis of Back Pain: Aids in Avoiding Unnecessary Back Surgery

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The selection of the proper patient for back surgery is of prime importance and is the topic of this report. An analysis of patients evaluated with differential epidural spinal anesthesia and the Pentothal pain study show these tests to be helpful in separating those patients with primarily organic pain who could benefit from surgery from those patients with primarily functional pain who should not be operated upon. These tests will help one determine whether a disability is related to the severity of pain, to the patient's emotional response to pain, or to a somatic manifestation of a gross emotional breakdown.

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