The current trend in management of low back pain leaning away from an anatomical origin of symptoms, yet structuralism in the diagnosis and treatment of low back pain is still highly prevalent. In particular, it is still popular in the vision of physicians, especially physiatrists and surgeons. They can’t inject and slice psychosocial causes of symptoms can they?
A recent study from Cid et al in Pain Practice was published with goal to identify common causes of low back pain from a panel of experts. Basically this is professional opinions on what anatomical structures, based on subjective and objective data, are the cause of low back pain.
I cropped out the tables from the study for you. Take a look below.
Despite controversy, I find this information valuable. With ~85% of LBP of mechanical origin “unknown”, this does assist in providing a clinical diagnosis. If anything, it helps with speaking the language with physicians. Now only if we (as physical therapists) can use this information to guide treatment, then we are making moves.
Do you agree with the results in tables above? What would you add to this conversation?