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Any quantified radiographic evaluation of the spine should be reliable, providing similar values from different evaluators, and should provide similar values on repeat measurements. In addition, measurements should provide useful information to guide clinical management.
This paper reports on the first aspect and compares measurement variability of the Powers ratio obtained from plain radiographs and from CT reformatted images. Overall similar values were obtained from either method, but the CT images provided more reproducible results. In fact, they show that the reliability of plain radiographs is not acceptable, whereas CT images do provide adequate reproducibility. This is important information.
This paper hints at some additional factors that might provide further insight or new understanding, but does not explore them.
This comment refers to the Original Article doi:10.1007/s00586-008-0877-5.