2001 Volvo Award winner in clinical studies : effects of a media campaign on back pain beliefs and its potential influence on management of low back pain in general practice

Buchbinder, Rachelle, Jolley, Damien and Wyatt, Mary 2001, 2001 Volvo Award winner in clinical studies : effects of a media campaign on back pain beliefs and its potential influence on management of low back pain in general practice, Spine, vol. 26, no. 23, pp. 2535-2542.

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Title 2001 Volvo Award winner in clinical studies : effects of a media campaign on back pain beliefs and its potential influence on management of low back pain in general practice
Author(s) Buchbinder, Rachelle
Jolley, Damien
Wyatt, Mary
Journal name Spine
Volume number 26
Issue number 23
Start page 2535
End page 2542
Total pages 8 p.
Publisher Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
Place of publication Philadelphia, Pa.
Publication date 2001-12
ISSN 0362-2436
1528-1159
Summary Study Design. Quasi-experimental, nonrandomized, nonequivalent, parallel group-controlled study involving before and after telephone surveys of the general population and postal surveys of general practitioners was conducted, with an adjacent state used as a control group.


Objectives. To evaluate the effectiveness of a population-based intervention designed to alter beliefs about back pain, influence medical management, and reduce disability and workers’ compensation–related costs.


Summary of Background Data. A multimedia campaign begun during 1997 in Victoria, Australia, positively advised patients with back pain to stay active and exercise, not to rest for prolonged periods, and to remain at work.


Methods. The campaign’s impact on population beliefs about back pain and fear-avoidance beliefs was measured in telephone surveys, and the effect of the campaign on the potential management of low back pain by general practitioners was assessed by eliciting their likely approach to two hypothetical scenarios in mailed surveys. Demographically identical population groups in Victoria and the control state, New South Wales, were surveyed at three times: before, during, and after intervention in Victoria.


Results. The studies were completed by 4730 individuals in the general population and 2556 general practitioners. There were large statistically significant improvements in back pain beliefs over time in Victoria (mean scores on the Back Beliefs Questionnaire, 26.5, 28.4, and 29.7), but not in New South Wales (26.3, 26.2, and 26.3, respectively). Among those who reported back pain during the previous year, fear-avoidance beliefs about physical activity improved significantly in Victoria (mean scores on the Fear-Avoidance Beliefs Questionnaire for physical activity, 14, 12.5, and 11.6), but not in New South Wales (13.3, 13.6, and 12.7, respectively). General practitioners in Victoria reported significant improvements over time in beliefs about back pain management, as compared with their interstate colleagues. There were statistically significant interactions between state and time for 7 of 10 responses on management of acute low back pain, and for 6 of 10 responses on management of subacute low back pain.


Conclusion. A population-based strategy of providing positive messages about back pain improves the beliefs of the general population and general practitioners about back pain and appears to influence medical management.
Language eng
Field of Research 110399 Clinical Sciences not elsewhere classified
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2001, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30008437

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: School of Health Sciences
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