Document Detail

Comparison of graded exercise and graded exposure clinical outcomes for patients with chronic low back pain.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  20972340     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
STUDY DESIGN: Quasi-experimental clinical trial.
OBJECTIVES: This study compared outcomes from graded exercise and graded exposure activity prescriptions for patients participating in a multidisciplinary rehabilitation program for chronic low back pain. Our primary purpose was to investigate whether pain and disability outcomes differed based on treatment received (graded exercise or graded exposure). Our secondary purpose was to investigate if changes in selected psychological factors were associated with pain and disability outcomes.
BACKGROUND: Behavioral interventions have been advocated for decreasing pain and disability from low back pain, yet relatively few comparative studies have been reported in the literature.
METHODS: Consecutive sample with chronic low back pain recruited over a 16-month period from an outpatient chronic pain clinic. Patients received physical therapy supplemented with either graded exercise (n=15) or graded exposure (n=18) principles. Graded exercise included general therapeutic activities and was progressed with a quota-based system. Graded exposure included specific activities that were feared due to back pain and was progressed with a hierarchical exposure paradigm. Psychological measures were pain-related fear (Fear-Avoidance Beliefs Questionnaire, Tampa Scale for Kinesiophobia, Fear of Pain Questionnaire), pain catastrophizing (Coping Strategies Questionnaire), and depressive symptoms (Beck Depression Inventory). Primary outcome measures were pain intensity (visual analog scale) and self-report of disability (modified Oswestry Disability Questionnaire).
RESULTS: Statistically significant improvements (P<.01) were observed for pain intensity and disability at discharge. The rate of improvement did not differ based on behavioral intervention received (P>.05 for these comparisons). Overall, 50% of patients met criterion for minimally important change for pain intensity, while 30% met this criterion for disability. Change in depressive symptoms was associated with change in pain intensity, while change in pain catastrophizing was associated with change in disability.
CONCLUSIONS: Physical therapy supplemented with graded exercise or graded exposure resulted in equivalent clinical outcomes for pain intensity and disability. The overall treatment effects were modest in this setting. Instead of being associated with a specific behavioral intervention, reductions in pain and disability were associated with reductions in depressive symptoms and pain catastrophizing, respectively.
LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: Therapy, level 2b–.
Steven Z George; Virgil T Wittmer; Roger B Fillingim; Michael E Robinson
Publication Detail:
Type:  Comparative Study; Journal Article; Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  The Journal of orthopaedic and sports physical therapy     Volume:  40     ISSN:  0190-6011     ISO Abbreviation:  J Orthop Sports Phys Ther     Publication Date:  2010 Nov 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2010-12-10     Completed Date:  2011-01-20     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7908150     Medline TA:  J Orthop Sports Phys Ther     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  694-704     Citation Subset:  IM    
Center for Pain Research and Behavioral Health, Department of Physical Therapy, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611-0154, USA.
Export Citation:
APA/MLA Format     Download EndNote     Download BibTex
MeSH Terms
Activities of Daily Living
Adaptation, Psychological
Analysis of Variance
Chronic Disease
Depression / psychology
Disability Evaluation
Exercise Therapy / methods*
Fear / psychology
Low Back Pain / physiopathology,  psychology*,  rehabilitation*
Middle Aged
Pain Measurement
Physical Therapy Modalities*
Recovery of Function
Treatment Outcome
Grant Support

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

Previous Document:  Effects of Pilates-Based Exercises on Pain and Disability in Individuals With Persistent Nonspecific...
Next Document:  Altered scapular orientation during arm elevation in patients with insidious onset neck pain and whi...