Author(s): Penttinen J, NevalaPuranen N, Airaksinen O, Jskelinen M, Sintonen H,
Abstract Share this page
Abstract The aim of this trial was to determine whether social interaction between patients with long-lasting nonspecific back pain reduces subjective or objective disability. The participants were selected from persons visiting an occupational health care unit because of back pain. After a clinical examination in a university clinic, subjects without a specific diagnosis and having no disabilities preventing active rehabilitation were selected for study. The subjects (n = 108) were randomized into treatment (n = 54) and control groups (n = 54). Altogether 18 study groups, 9 treatment groups and 9 groups for controls, were formed. Before starting the back schools altogether 15 subjects dropped out. Both the treatment groups (n = 47) and the controls (n = 46) attended a back school consisting of 10 lessons and demonstrations supervised by a physiotherapist. The participants in treatment groups, but not the controls, had physical exercise and social intercourse with other members within the group. The clinical examination was repeated after 6 and 12 months. Both the treatment groups and the controls showed improvement in perceived functional capacity (assessed with Oswestry disability questionnaire) and in perceived life quality (assessed with 15D score). At the 6-month follow-up life quality had improved statistically significantly more among the participants in treatment groups than among the controls, and at the 12-month follow-up the Oswestry index showed corresponding improvement. Among subjects suffering from nonspecific back pain, social support improves the results of active rehabilitation.
This article was published in J Occup Rehabil
and referenced in Journal of Spine