Quicker treatment needed for back pain, study suggests

Posted on 19 April 2011

Immediate physiotherapy treatment after an injury reduces lower back pain difficulties, according to research, which could affect the lives of people paying for care.

Lena Nordeman, researcher at Sahlgrenska Academy and author of the thesis, compared lower back pain patients, one group of which had skipped the waiting list, while others were kept on it.

While both groups exhibited improvements, the group given the earlier treatment and individualised treatment maintained their improvement after six months. However, the patients kept on the waiting list were more likely to endure recurring back pain.

"I wanted to find out whether patients' low back pain could be alleviated in the long run if primary care clinics could offer examinations and treatment by a physiotherapist without any delay in the form of a doctor's referral or waiting list," she explained.

This follows advice from Dr Nicola Walsh, a senior lecturer at the University of the West of England, that said older people with chronic back, knee and hip pain should undertake certain exercises to improve their condition, concentrating on functional strengthening, mobilising and stability exercises.

Posted by Natalie Edwards

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