Multidisciplinary Rehabilitation for Subacute Low Back Pain: Graded Activity or Workplace Intervention or Both?: A Randomized Controlled Trial.

Anema, Johannes R. MD, PhD; Steenstra, Ivan A. PhD; Bongers, Paulien M. PhD; de Vet, Henrica C. W. PhD; Knol, Dirk L. PhD; Loisel, Patrick MD, FRCSC; van Mechelen, Willem MD, PhD

The objective of this study was to assess the effectiveness of workplace intervention and graded activity, separately and combined, for multidisciplinary rehabilitation of low back pain (LBP).  Participants sick-listed 2 to 6 weeks due to nonspecific LBP were randomized to workplace intervention or usual care. Workplace intervention consisted of workplace assessment, work modifications, and case management involving all stakeholders. Participants still sick-listed at 8 weeks were randomized for graded activity or usual care. Graded activity comprised biweekly 1-hour exercise sessions based on operant-conditioning principles. The authors conclude that workplace intervention is advised for multidisciplinary rehabilitation of subacute LBP. Graded activity or combined intervention is not advised.

Spine.    32(3):291-298, February 1, 2007.

View Abstract