To describe within the context of the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF), patient's experiences post-lumber fusion regarding back problems, recovery and expectations of rehabilitation and to contrast with the content of outcome measures and the ICF low back pain (LBP) core sets.
The study has a cross-sectional and retrospective design and involves 20 lumbar fusion patients. Using the ICF, qualitative content analysis of semi-structured interviews 3-6 months post-surgery was performed. This was compared with the ICF related content of the Oswestry Disability Index (ODI), Medical Outcome Study Short Form 36 (SF-36), European Quality of Life Questionnaire (EQ5D) and the ICF LBP core sets.
Patient's experiences were most frequently linked to psychological, sensory, neuromusculoskeletal and movement related body function chapters of the ICF. The most frequently linked categories of activity and participation were mobility, domestic activities, family relationships, work, recreation and leisure. Environmental factors frequently linked were the use of analgesics, walking aids, family support, social security systems, health care systems and labour market employment services.
This study highlights important ICF related aspects of patient's experiences post-lumber fusion. The use of the comprehensive ICF core sets is recommended in conjunction with ODI, SF-36 and the EQ5D for a broader analysis of patient outcomes post-lumbar fusion.
2011. Vol. 33, no 15-16, 1399-1408 p.