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What does physiotherapy teach us about back pain?
Published on July 30, 2015 34 min
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My name is Josephine O'Callaghan. I'm a specialist musculoskeletal physiotherapist with a BSE and MSC in advanced manipulative physiotherapy. I work at Physiotherapy London. The title of the presentation is, What Does Physiotherapy Teach Us About Back Pain? With such a large topic to cover, the presentation will focus on mechanical low back pain.
This presentation will look at physiotherapy as an intervention choice, the role of the physiotherapist, and physiotherapy assessment and management strategies and how this can be tailored to the patient.
Physiotherapy has been recommended as an intervention for low back pain in the 2014 NICE Guidelines. Moreover, it has been determined to be a cost-effective intervention, and early referral to physiotherapy can reduce the need for medical or surgical procedures. Physiotherapy can include manual therapy, exercise therapy, acupuncture, and patient advice and education. Pillistrini et al reviewed clinical practice guidelines and highlighted the importance of education, exercise, and the continuance of activities of daily living to patients with low back pain. There was a lack of consensus regarding one specific type of exercise for this patient group. However, graded, supervised, and patient-specific exercises are recommended, and physiotherapists are ideally placed to formulate these programs.
The role of the physiotherapist is varied depending on the patient's clinical presentation but may encompass all of the following. Education so that the patient has an understanding of their symptoms and management plan. The physiotherapist can provide pain relief, which may be through manual therapy, taping techniques, acupuncture, or exercises. The physiotherapist will analyze posture and movement, which is important to improve motor control, and prescribe exercises to enhance this. It can be argued that exercise programs should be individualized to the patient to address their specific needs.