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Evidence-Based Resource Summary

Strength of Evidence: 
4 out of 4
4 out of 4
Year Published: 

Cochrane Summary – Behavioural Treatment for Chronic Back Pain

Description of Resource: 
Low-back pain is a major health and economical problem that affects populations around the world. Chronic low-back pain, in particular, is a major cause of medical expenses, work absenteeism, and disability. Current management of chronic low-back pain includes a range of different treatments such as medication, exercise, and behavioral therapy. Research has shown that social roles and psychological factors have a role in the course of chronic low-back pain. This review of 30 studies (3,438 participants) evaluated 3 behavioral therapies for chronic low-back pain: (1) operant (acknowledging that external factors associated with pain can reinforce it), (2) cognitive (dealing with thoughts, feelings, beliefs, or a combination thereof that trigger the pain), and (3) respondent (interrupting muscle tension with progressive relaxation techniques or biofeedback of muscle activity).

Evidence-Based Resource Details

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Developed By: 
Cochrane Collaboration
Developer Type: 
Non-Federal Government
Healthy People 2020 Topic Area(s): 
Arthritis, Osteoporosis, and Chronic Back Conditions
Healthy People 2020 Objectives: 
Resource Type: 
Systematic Review
Henschke N, Ostelo RWJG, van Tulder MW, Vlaeyen JWS, Morley S, Assendelft WJJ, Main CJ. Behavioural treatment for chronic low-back pain. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews [Internet]. 2011 Feb 16 [cited 2013 Feb 28]. Available from: