Fear of movement/(re)injury predicting chronic disabling low back pain: a prospective inception cohort study

I.E. Swinkels-Meewisse*, J. Roelofs, E.G.W. Schouten, A.L.M. Verbeek, R.A.B. Oostendorp, J.W.S. Vlaeyen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Study Design. Prospective inception cohort study. Objective. To investigate prospectively whether pain-related fear predicts future perceived disability and participation in patients with acute low back pain (LBP). Summary of Background Data. There are indications that fear of movement/(re) injury, as measured by the Tampa Scale for Kinesiophobia, is present early in an episode of LBP, and that it might be a predictor of future perceived disability and participation. Methods. A cohort of 555 patients with acute LBP included by general practitioners and physical therapists in primary care settings was followed for 6 months. Results. Results indicate that baseline fear of movement/(re) injury was predictive of future perceived disability and, to a lesser extent (and together with duration and radiation), of participation. Conclusions. The results suggest that interventions aimed at reducing pain-related fear in the acute stage of LBP might prevent restrictions of activity and participation because of pain, and might be a way of preventing the transition from acute to chronic LBP.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)658-664
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2006

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