Effectiveness of Primary Care Interventions Using a Biopsychosocial Approach in Chronic Low Back Pain: A Systematic Review

Reni M. A. van Erp, Ivan P. J. Huijnen*, Marluuke L. G. Jakobs, Jos Kleijnen, Rob J. E. M. Smeets

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

40 Citations (Web of Science)

Abstract

Background and Objective Recent systematic reviews show promising effects for multidisciplinary biopsychosocial (BPS) interventions in patients with chronic low back pain (CLBP). Nowadays, BPS interventions have also been developed for primary care physiotherapy settings. Our aim was to systematically review the evidence on the effectiveness of primary care BPS interventions in improving functional disability, pain, and work status for patients with CLBP. Secondly, we aimed to provide an elaborated overview of BPS intervention designs, physiotherapist training programs, and process-related factors (practical implementation). Methods We searched in scientific databases and reference lists. Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) evaluating primary care physiotherapist-led BPS interventions in adults (>= 18 years) with nonspecific CLBP (>= 12 weeks) were included. Results Our search resulted in 943 references; 7 RCTs were included (1,426 participants). Results show moderate-quality evidence (3 trials; 991 participants) that a BPS intervention is more effective than education/advice for reducing disability and pain in the short, medium, and long term. Low-quality evidence (4 trials; 435 participants) was found for no difference with physical activity treatments. Conclusions BPS interventions seem more effective than education/advice and were found to be as effective as physical activity interventions in patients with CLBP. BPS interventions with a clear focus on psychosocial factors (understanding pain, unhelpful thoughts, coping styles, and goal setting) seem most promising. Sufficient delivery of BPS elements is expected when physiotherapists participate in training programs with extensive support prior and during delivery (manual, supervision, and informative resources).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)224-241
Number of pages18
JournalPain Practice
Volume19
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2019

Keywords

  • low back pain
  • chronic pain
  • biopsychosocial intervention
  • primary health care
  • physiotherapy
  • systematic review
  • GROUP TRAINING PROTOCOL
  • CLINICAL IMPORTANCE
  • COMMITMENT THERAPY
  • GRADED ACTIVITY
  • FEAR
  • PHYSIOTHERAPY
  • ACCEPTANCE
  • GUIDELINE
  • OUTCOMES
  • TRIALS

Cite this