Does minor trauma cause serious low back illness?

Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2006 Dec 1;31(25):2942-9.

Carragee E1Alamin TCheng IFranklin THurwitz E



Prospective, 5-year, cohort study of working subjects.

CONCLUSIONS: Age and sex-adjusted prediction models, including abnormal psychometric testing, smoking, and compensation issues, accurately identified 80% of serious LBP events and 93% of LBP disability events.

In this study cohort, minor trauma does not appear to increase the risk of serious LBP episodes or disability. The vast majority of incident-adverse LBP events may be predicted not by structural findings or minor trauma but by a small set of demographic and behavioral variables.

Dr. Kennedy Comment: This study is yet another (and nearly10 years old) indicating psychometric, financial/compensation and likely lifestyle issues (e.g. smoking) are huge drivers of long-term LBP & disability. But we can’t lose sight of the connection our counsel, enthusiasm, kindness & confidence have in establishing a positive and substantial healing environment. High-power Laser and decompression and ‘movement therapy’ play a major role in those aspects.

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