Back pain in primary care: a prospective cohort study of clinical outcome and healthcare consumption
2003 (English)In: Advances in Physiotherapy, ISSN 1403-8196, E-ISSN 1651-1948, Vol. 5, no 3, 98-108 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
The aim was to describe the clinical course without active treatment in patients with low back and neck pain visiting primary care. A prospective consecutive study was done with follow-ups weekly for 6 weeks and at 3, 6, 12 and 30 months. Main outcome measures were proportion of patients who were free of pain and back-related disability and proportion of patients found to have received additional healthcare at 3-, 6-, 12- and 30-month follow-ups. The physiotherapist predicted additional treatment. Eighty consecutive patients were included. 39 low back pain and 17 neck pain patients underwent 30 months of follow-up. The results on a group level were consistent from about 4 weeks. In the low back pain group, 41% reported no pain and no disability after 30 months, within 3 months 33% and within 30 months 64% had received additional healthcare. In the neck pain group, 12% reported no pain and no disability after 30 months, within 3 months 59% and within 30 months 71% had received additional healthcare. A higher proportion of the patients, predicted with a high probability to seek additional care also reported additional care. It can be expected that half the back pain patients being cared for in primary care will continue to suffer from problems 30 months later. The slope of recovery is most prominent during the first 4 weeks, and a worse outcome is in the neck pain patients. Further healthcare is not equal to self-reported back pain problems at baseline. The 4-week evaluation can be used to predict groups with future healthcare utilization up until 30 months. Further studies including larger cohorts are needed to confirm the results.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2003. Vol. 5, no 3, 98-108 p.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-26265DOI: 10.1080/14038190310004862Local ID: 10775OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-26265DiVA: diva2:246813