Detailed guides to painful problems, treatments & more

Extremely thorough, valuable review of studies of back pain treatments

PainSci » bibliography » Chou et al 2009
Tags: back pain, surgery, neck, treatment, neurology, sciatica, radiculopathy, leg, pain problems, spine, head/neck, butt, hip, herniation, intervertebral disc, limbs, rapdy

Three articles on PainSci cite Chou 2009: 1. The Complete Guide to Low Back Pain2. The Complete Guide to Neck Pain & Cricks3. The Mind Game in Low Back Pain

PainSci commentary on Chou 2009: ?This page is one of thousands in the bibliography. It is not a general article: it is focused on a single scientific paper, and it may provide only just enough context for the summary to make sense. Links to other papers and more general information are provided wherever possible.

This is a particularly exhaustive and useful review of back pain treatments, by the American Pain Society. They looked at 161 good studies, all randomized and controlled trials, picked from 3348 candidates. They came up with eight recommendations, such as emphasizing cognitive-behavioral approaches, and avoiding a bunch of historically popular interventions (including provocative discography, facet joint corticosteroid injection, prolotherapy, intradiscal corticosteroid injection, or vertebral disc replacement). For patients with persistent radiculopathy (sciatica), the APS recommends considering epidural steroid injection, surgery, and spinal cord stimulation.

~ Paul Ingraham

original abstract Abstracts here may not perfectly match originals, for a variety of technical and practical reasons. Some abstacts are truncated for my purposes here, if they are particularly long-winded and unhelpful. I occasionally add clarifying notes. And I make some minor corrections.

STUDY DESIGN: Clinical practice guideline.

OBJECTIVE: To develop evidence-based recommendations on use of interventional diagnostic tests and therapies, surgeries, and interdisciplinary rehabilitation for low back pain of any duration, with or without leg pain.

SUMMARY OF BACKGROUND DATA: Management of patients with persistent and disabling low back pain remains a clinical challenge. A number of interventional diagnostic tests and therapies and surgery are available and their use is increasing, but in some cases their utility remains uncertain or controversial. Interdisciplinary rehabilitation has also been proposed as a potentially effective noninvasive intervention for persistent and disabling low back pain.

METHODS: A multidisciplinary panel was convened by the American Pain Society. Its recommendations were based on a systematic review that focused on evidence from randomized controlled trials. Recommendations were graded using methods adapted from the US Preventive Services Task Force and the Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development, and Evaluation Working Group.

RESULTS: Investigators reviewed 3348 abstracts. A total of 161 randomized trials were deemed relevant to the recommendations in this guideline. The panel developed a total of 8 recommendations.

CONCLUSION: Recommendations on use of interventional diagnostic tests and therapies, surgery, and interdisciplinary rehabilitation are presented. Due to important trade-offs between potential benefits, harms, costs, and burdens of alternative therapies, shared decision-making is an important component of a number of the recommendations.

This page is part of the PainScience BIBLIOGRAPHY, which contains plain language summaries of thousands of scientific papers & others sources. It’s like a highly specialized blog. A few highlights: