Short-, medium-, and longterm benefits of a back school program: retrospective study on 394 patients with chronic low back pain

V. De Bolle, L. Barras, P. Jassogne Published in the journal : April 2016 Category : Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine

Summary :

Chronic low back pain is a common reason for medical consultation, with significant impact on functional and professional status of affected patients. Many treatments are available. One of these, a back school program, is a multidisciplinary approach involving therapeutic education and physical exercise. The variety of potential options to treat chronic low back pain and the difficulty of long-term follow-up were the main reasons leading us to carry out this study. Our back school protocol consists of therapeutic education, along with cognitive-behavioral approach and gradual musclestrengthening exercises. In this article, we have presented our experience with back school and our study results regarding 394 chronic low back pain patients assessed on the short- (end-ofprogram evaluation), medium- (6-month evaluation), and longterm (12-month evaluation). The study's main outcome parameters included the benefits of back school on pain, as well as its impact on quality of life, functional status, and professional status. Our back school protocol yielded significant benefits that were maintained over the mediumand long-term. Furthermore, we observed a high rate of patients returning to work.

What is already known about the topic?

Back school is a multidisciplinary rehabilitation concept consisting of therapeutic education and physical exercise. It is indicated in low back pain patients. This therapeutic approach displays many disparities as to its content and duration.

What does this article bring up for us?

We analyzed the back school concept in the Belgian context, and reported our experience and the end-of-program, 6-month, and 12-month therapeutic results.

Key Words

Back school, low back pain, therapeutic efficacy