Treatments Prescribed For Lower Back Pain Are Often Ineffective, Report Says : NPR

Chances are, you — or someone you know — has suffered from lower back pain.It can be debilitating. It's a leading cause of disability globally.And the number of people with the often-chronic condition is likely to increase.This warning comes via a series of articles published in the medical journal Lancet in March. They state that about 540 million people have lower back pain — and they predict that the number will jump as the world's population ages and as populations in lower- and middle-income countries move to urban centers and adopt more sedentary lives."We don't think about [back pain] the same way as cancer or heart attacks. But if you look at disability it causes, especially in middle- and low-income where there isn't a safety net, it impacts half a billion people," says Roger Chou, a physician who is a pain specialist at the Oregon Health and Science University and a co-author of the articles.Disability from chronic back pain can hurt a person's ability to earn a living. One of the Lancet studies found that among rural Nigerian farmers, half reduced their workload because of back pain — an example of how the disability could contribute to the cycle of poverty in countries that lack benefits such as sick days or a social safety net.Another study from Australia found that people who retired early because of back pain potentially lost out on hundreds of thousands of dollars of accumulated wealth when compared with he...
Source: Psychology of Pain - Category: Anesthesiology Source Type: blogs

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For over 20 years, Linda Buonanno lived in fear that her irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) would suddenly interrupt her daily routine with frequent trips to the bathroom and unbearable cramping. Buonanno, now a 71-year-old medical assistant and hairdresser from Methuen, Mass., tried everything from drugs to dairy-free diets. Nothing worked. She remembers a particularly tough period over 10 years ago, when she was working on the factory floor of a medical-device company for up to 10 hours a day, six days a week. When an IBS episode would strike, her co-workers would cover for her as she huddled in a corner, keeled over in pain...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized medicine Research Source Type: news
In this study, we analyzed FGF21 levels and alterations in the expression of genes encoding components of the FGF21-responsive molecular machinery in adipose tissue from aged individuals so as to ascertain whether altered FGF21 responsiveness that develops with aging jeopardizes human health and/or accelerates metabolic disturbances associated with aging. We studied a cohort of 28 healthy elderly individuals (≥70 years) with no overt signs of metabolic or other pathologies and compared them with a cohort of 35 young healthy controls (≤40 years). Serum FGF21 levels were significantly increased in elderly indiv...
Source: Fight Aging! - Category: Research Authors: Tags: Newsletters Source Type: blogs
Conclusions: The quality of primary care varies by clinician type, with different strengths for PCNPs and PCMDs. These comparative advantages should be considered when determining how to organize primary care to Medicare beneficiaries.
Source: Medical Care - Category: Health Management Tags: Original Article Source Type: research
“A bear, however hard he tries, grows tubby without exercise.” – A. A. Milne You don’t need to knock yourself out at the gym each day to reap the many health benefits of daily exercise. With simple planning and a determination to engage in a healthier lifestyle, you can add easy stints of exercise to your schedule without breaking too much of a sweat. Best of all, you may realize some of these 10 health benefits of daily exercise. Exercise elevates your mood When you are physically active, it stimulates brain chemicals that make you feel better and lifts your mood. Some experts say that exercise of ...
Source: World of Psychology - Category: Psychiatry & Psychology Authors: Tags: Habits Health-related LifeHelper Self-Help Source Type: blogs
In a move likely to create some havoc in compensation systems around the world (well, at least in my corner of the world!), the International Association for the Study of Pain has worked with the World Health Organisation to develop a way to classify and thus record persistent pain conditions in the new (draft) ICD-11. While primary headache disorder has been in the classification for some years, other forms of persistent pain have not. Recording the presence of a pain disorder is incredibly important step forward for recognising and (fingers crossed) funding research and treatment into the problem of persistent pain. As t...
Source: HealthSkills Weblog - Category: Anesthesiology Authors: Tags: Chronic pain Clinical reasoning Health Research biopsychosocial healthcare Source Type: blogs
Low back pain, the scourge of mankind: it is the second leading cause of disability here in the United States, and the fourth worldwide. It’s also one of the top five medical problems for which people see doctors. Almost every day that I see patients, I see someone with back pain. It’s one of the top reasons for lost wages due to missed work, as well as for healthcare dollars spent, hence, a very expensive problem. Looking at two kinds of back pain Let’s talk about the most common forms of back pain: acute (which lasts less than four weeks) and subacute (which lasts four to 12 weeks). Most of these cases ...
Source: Harvard Health Blog - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Back Pain Managing your health care Pain Management Source Type: blogs
Over the last year, the general public has been inundated with a steady stream of reports about the dangers of opiates — pain medicines like codeine, Percocet, and OxyContin. The harm in terms of ruined lives and death from illicit drugs such as heroin is not news. But what is new, and concerning, are the risks of prescription pain medicines — those doctors prescribe for pain due to a range of causes, including musculoskeletal problems like low back pain. The history of using opiates for chronic pain Back pain isn’t a new problem either, but the history of how doctors have treated it is probably new to ma...
Source: New Harvard Health Information - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Addiction Back Pain Behavioral Health Pain Management Source Type: news
In conclusion, Bethge’s observational study presents evidence that (i) gradual RTW is a method to be used across most chronic diseases and (ii) timely attachment to one’s job will support workers to remain productive in their regular job and have a higher income. The latter is certainly an uplifting message for the reader of this journal. Often our studies focus on the adverse effects of work on health. The study demonstrates that for many workers with health problems, being at work promotes health and wealth! by Burdorf A, van der Beek AJ. doi:10.5271/sjweh.3576
Source: Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health - Category: Occupational Health Tags: Editorial Source Type: research
Conclusion This systematic review found no evidence that opioids provide a meaningful effect on chronic non-specific lower back pain. Opioids are often used as a last resort for people who have not responded to other painkillers. But these results found opioids gave only half the size of the effect that would be needed to make a real difference – about a 10-point score difference, rather than 20. On the whole, the body of evidence was high quality. A large number of trials where identified, and most were multi-centre trials with good sample sizes carried out in the US, Canada, Australia and Europe. This means ...
Source: NHS News Feed - Category: Consumer Health News Tags: Medication Medical practice Neurology Source Type: news
Conclusions: Work disability prevention strategies should consider both employee age and chronic condition diagnosis.
Source: Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine - Category: Occupational Health Tags: Original Articles Source Type: research
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