Predicting the transition from acute to persistent low back pain

Melloh, Markus; Elfering, Achim; Egli Presland, Carmen; Röder, Christoph; Hendrick, Paul; Darlow, Ben; Theis, Jean-Claude (2011). Predicting the transition from acute to persistent low back pain. Australasian epidemiologist, 18(2), pp. 35-36. Melbourne: Informit

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Most people experience low back pain (LBP) at least once in their lifetime. Only a minority of them go on to develop persistent LBP. However, the socioeconomic costs of persistent LBP significantly exceed the costs of the initial acute LBP episode.

To identify factors that influence the progression of acute LBP to the persistent state at an early stage.

Prospective inception cohort study of patients attending a health practitioner for their first episode of acute LBP or recurrent LBP after a pain free period of at least 6 months. Patients were assessed at baseline addressing occupational and psychological factors as well as pain, disability, quality of life and physical activity and followed up at 3, 6, 12 weeks and 6 months. Variables were combined to the three indices 'working condition', 'depression and maladaptive cognitions' and 'pain and quality of life'.

The index 'depression and maladaptive cognitions' was found to be a significant baseline predictor for persistent LBP up to 6 months (OR 5.1; 95% CI: 1.04-25.1). Overall predictive accuracy of the model was 81%.

In this study of patients with acute LBP in a primary care setting psychological factors at baseline correlated with a progression to persistent LBP up to 6 months. The benefit of including factors such as 'depression and maladaptive cognition' in screening tools is that these factors can be addressed in primary and secondary prevention.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Further Contribution)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Pre-clinic Human Medicine > Institute for Evaluative Research into Orthopaedic Surgery

UniBE Contributor:

Melloh, Markus and Röder, Christoph


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health








Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 14:19

Last Modified:

11 Jun 2014 08:47

URI: (FactScience: 210811)

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