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Back Pain, what does and doesn’t help… we’re asking

By Timothy Cocks Science and the world 29 Sep 2021
Click on the image above to participate in the online research survey

Low back pain is the leading cause of disability in the world. Research has shown that back pain is complex and influenced by many factors such as the things happening in your body, what you do, what you think, your interactions with family, friends, and health care professionals, and loads of other factors. 

Imagine you experience back pain and decide to seek help from a healthcare professional. You might imagine that the information you receive about your back pain and its underlying factors would be consistent, especially from healthcare practitioners within the same profession. However, this is unlikely (1, 2). Although we have evidence based guidelines for treating back pain, research has shown that there is a large discrepancy in how healthcare practitioners tackle similar issues (1, 2) 

There may be pros and cons influencing how a person with back pain feels about their situation and how helpful they find these different approaches. Although we know that it is vital that people with pain find someone they trust and who works for them, there may be hidden problems with approaches that seem helpful, and perhaps even benefit from approaches that seem unhelpful!  

It is essential that we better understand what does and does not help people with low back pain. So, we’re asking!

We have constructed a novel online survey for anyone with or without back pain. This unique survey will place you in a virtual scenario where a fictional you will experience back pain and then receive treatment! Along the way we want to hear your thoughts about what you would do.

If you are a healthcare practitioner working with people with pain, sorry, this survey isn’t for you. But you can still help by sharing the link to the survey with everyone you know – anyone with or without back pain can take the survey.

If you are not a healthcare professional working with people in pain, aged between 18 and 80, with or without back pain, you can follow the link HERE to complete the survey, and help us better understand low back pain and the best way to treat it. Your thoughts will be extremely helpful. 

The 15-20 minutes that it takes to complete the study is precious to us, and those living with pain – so we thank you in advance! And again, please share the link with a friend or family member you care about. It will likely give you some interesting things to talk about after – with some great info about back pain right at the end!

Brendan Mouatt
Body in Mind Research Group
IIMPACT In Health, Allied health & Human Performance
University of South Australia

Our thanks to Brendan for sharing his research with us, so that we can share it with you, so that you can help, and share it with others too! Noigroup

Take the Survey HERE

References for some further reading

1.     Zadro, J., O’Keeffe, M., & Maher, C. (2019). Do physical therapists follow evidence-based guidelines when managing musculoskeletal conditions? Systematic review. BMJ open, 9(10), e032329. (Open access)

2.     Gardner, T., Refshauge, K., Smith, L., McAuley, J., Hübscher, M., & Goodall, S. (2017). Physiotherapists’ beliefs and attitudes influence clinical practice in chronic low back pain: a systematic review of quantitative and qualitative studies. Journal of physiotherapy, 63(3), 132-143.(Open access)


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