Physiatry plays an important role in the non-surgical management of most spine conditions. Physiatrists perform electrodiagnostic studies such as nerve conduction and electromyography.
In addition to a diagnostic test a physiatrist can administer a number of injections including epidural injections, facet injections, and trigger point injections. These can help to make diagnoses when the clinical picture is not clear and also help to alleviate pain. Many patients are able to avoid surgery if their pain is controlled with these less invasive injection techniques.
These tests can help identify if patients have nerve or muscular disorders. They can also perform lumbar and cervical discograms which are often used to localize the source of a patients pain.