Background: Physiotherapy after lumbar spinal fusion surgery is traditionally focused on physical exercise. Too few studies have investigatedthe efficacy of modern lumbar stabilization exercise regimes. Benefits have been shown for combining traditional physical exercise with a psychosocial intervention. No randomised controlled study has evaluated thecombined biopsychosocial effect of modern lumbar stabilization exercisesand cognitive behavioural intervention compared to traditional physical exercise starting immediately after lumbar spinal fusion.
Purpose: To investigate the effectiveness of modern physiotherapy(MPT) compared to a traditional physiotherapy (TPT) starting immediately after lumber spinal fusion.
Study design/setting: Randomized controlled clinical trial.
Patient sample, inclusion period and follow-up: Patients between 18 and 65 years, selected for lumbar spinal fusion due to at least 12 months of CLBP symptoms caused by spinal stenosis, spondylosis, spondylolisthesis or degenerative disc disease were included in the study between 2005 and 2007. A total of 107 patients were randomly allocated to the MPT group (n = 53) and TPT group (n = 54). The TPT group was prescribed daily home based pain contingent training of traditional physical exercises for back, abdominal and leg muscles. The MPT group was prescribed daily home based training of lumbar stabilization exercises combined with 90 min of cognitive behavioural intervention at 3, 6 and 9 weeks after the operation. The patients outcomes were followed up at 3, 6, 12 months and 2–3 years
Outcome measures: Oswestry disability index (ODI), pain intensity, HRQOL, kinesiophobia, anxiety/depression, self-efficacy, outcome expectancy, use of coping strategies, work status, sickness leave and health care use.
Methods: Analysis of mean differences between groups.
Results: 2–3 year follow-up showed that the MPT group had significantly lower percentage scores in ODI = 18.2 (P = 0.008), kinesiophobia= 30.0 (P = 0.001), catastrophizing = 21.8 (P = 0.006) and higher self-efficacy = 64.6 (P = 0.019) compared to TPT group’s ODI = 28.1, kinesiophobia = 41.9, catastrophizing = 31.3 and self-efficacy = 55.5. The MPT group had significantly more employment, less health care use (P = 0.035) and less long-term sickness leave (P = 0.040).
Conclusions: This study provides evidence for the benefits of combining lumbar stabilization exercise and cognitive behavioural intervention starting immediately after lumbar fusion.
Springer, 2009. Vol. 18, Supplement 4, S409-S410 p.