Publication: Early Access to Physical Therapy Treatment for Subacute Low Back Pain in Primary Health Care. A prospective randomized clinical trial

Early Access to Physical Therapy Treatment for Subacute Low Back Pain in Primary Health Care. A prospective randomized clinical trial.
Göteborg: Läkarstämman; 2006.

Abstract

Introduction:

A majority of the population (60-80%) will suffer from low back pain (LBP). Most recover (90%) spontaneously within 4 to 6 weeks regardless of treatment, while 3-10 % develops long-term LBP. The subacute phase in LBP is a critical episode for transition to long-term LBP. The aim of the study was to evaluate the effects of early access to physical therapy treatment for subacute LBP compared to access with a four week waiting list.

Methods:

Sixty patients with subacute LBP were randomized into either early access within 2 days for physical examination and individualized physical therapy (n=32) or a control group with a 4 week waiting list (n=28). Self-administrated questionnaires were used for assessment at inclusion, at discharge and at 6 months. Primary outcomes measure was pain intensity assessed by Borg category scale for ratings of perceived pain. Secondary outcomes included the Roland and Morris disability questionnaire, the Örebro musculoskeletal pain screening questionnaire, sick leave, visits to health care, and physical therapy. Analysis was by intension to treat. Chi square with Yate’s correction was used for group comparisons of nominal data. Fischer’s exact test was used for small numbers. For differences between groups the Mann Whitney test was used.

Results:

The results showed no difference in perceived pain or disability between the groups at discharge. At 6 months follow up the reduction of perceived pain was significantly greater in the early access group compared to the control group (P= 0.025). Changes in secondary outcome measures were not significantly different between groups.

Conclusion:

This study indicated that early access to physical therapy resulted in greater improvement in perceived pain at 6 months compared to later access.


, from FoU i Västra Götalandsregionen
http://www.researchweb.org/is/vgr/project/publication?ref=89401