Are symptoms of depression a risk factor for low back pain?

It is well known that both low back pain and depression are highly prevalent, costly, and disabling conditions. The prevalence of patients suffering with both is high. Clinicians often encounter these complex patients and face challenging decisions for their management. Our research group, led by Dr Paulo Ferreira from the Arthritis and … [Read more...]

Tweeting Back

Globally, around 3.2-billion people are connected to the Internet. Online technologies are now ever-present in daily life, and they are influencing healthcare in new and exciting ways. The World Health Organisation has defined this phenomenon as “eHealth” - the practice of medicine and public health supported by electronic processes and … [Read more...]

Mid-back pain after traffic collisions: can your expectations move that mountain?

 “I saw my doctor and he said to me that some people suffer, that whiplash can take up to 18 months. Well, now I can see that he was
 right.” Patient with chronic pain after a traffic collision (Williamson et al., 2015) Recovery expectations have been found to play an important role in the prognosis of neck pain after traffic injuries (Holm et … [Read more...]

Chronic low back pain – are we really measuring the treatment outcome patients want?

Traditionally health care professionals (HCP) assess and treat according to the biomedical model, where the practitioner takes the leading role with diagnosis and intervention. Treatment goals are set by the HCP and are set against standard biomedical measures1.  But are patients are interested in our goals? How many exercise programs set by the … [Read more...]

Surgical or non-surgical management for sciatica – what you need to know

Whilst low back pain (LBP) is the number one cause of disability worldwide, a small number of patients will suffer associated leg pain, generally due to a herniated intervertebral lumbar disc - commonly known as ’sciatica’. Responsible for less than five percent of all low-back presentations, lower limb pins and needles, tingling, numbness or … [Read more...]

GP management of back pain – challenges and opportunities

Low back pain is a very common reason to visit the doctor but previous studies have indicated that GP management of back pain is often inconsistent with evidence-based guidelines. We wanted to explore the beliefs of New Zealand GPs about back pain and how these influenced their management of patients with back pain. We found that GPs who … [Read more...]

A big belly isn’t necessarily a pain in the back

Over 80% of Australians experience back pain at some point in their lives, which is one of the most common reasons people miss work and seek health care. Despite the efforts of the scientific community to identify risks factors for back pain, the cause of this condition is still poorly understood. Knowing what causes low back pain might help us … [Read more...]

Treating more than just the back in chronic low back pain

'Physiotherapists may stigmatise or feel unprepared to treat people with low back pain and psychosocial factors that influence recovery: a systematic review' (Synnott et al, 2015) There is considerable evidence that when people have chronic low back pain (LBP), several factors can be involved in delaying their recovery and/or their ability to … [Read more...]

Core outcome domains for non-specific low back pain

In 1997, during the second International Forum on Primary Care Research for Low Back Pain (LBP) held in The Hague (Netherlands), a group of experienced clinical researchers gathered together and decided to formulate a standardised set of outcomes to be recommended to colleagues for use in LBP clinical research. These recommendations included five … [Read more...]

Self-management for people with back pain and osteoarthritis – reviewing the evidence

Osteoarthritis (OA) and chronic low back pain (CLBP) are two of the most common musculoskeletal pain conditions in the developed world (WHO, 2003). These conditions place a huge burden on both the health system, in terms of service demand, and the people with the condition, in terms of quality of life and personal wellbeing (Buchbinder et al., … [Read more...]