Radiographs (x-rays) are a low yield diagnostic tool for soft tissue. To diagnosis slipped disc/disc damage/spinal cord disease we employ myleograms (contrast agent in the spinal space and radiographs), MRI/ CT scans, spinal fluid analysis.
A structural defect such as disc disease will show up readily with MRI, my favorite tool. Myleograms are too invasive and do not give the same detail as MRI, and also have a degree of risk.
If there is muscle trauma (lower back), then this may show up with MRI, but not with myleograms or radiographs, and probably not with CT imaging. There are certain spinal cord disease that cause pain, but have no structural derangements: these are usually infectious or of some type of diffuse vascular damage.
Cage rest will help lower back muscle spasm, might help mild disc disease and not really help vascular type/infectious problems. Further investagation is indicated before a diagnosis can be made.
Dr. Van Lienden
Dr. Raymond Van Lienden DVM
The Animal Clinic of Clifton
12702 Chapel Road, Clifton
Virginia, U.S.A. 20124