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Trial of Prevention Strategies for Low Back Pain (TOPS)

Prevention strategies for the recurrence of back pain
A randomised trial comparing the effectiveness of two treatments to prevent a recurrence of back pain

Back pain is the most disabling condition in Australia, and the personal and economic burden associated with it is enormous. One of the most burdensome aspects of back pain is its recurrent nature; that is, once you’ve had an episode it is very likely that you’ll experience back pain in the future. Likewise, this is a very common concern of patients experiencing an acute episode of low back pain.

That is why researchers at Musculoskeletal Health Sydney, The University of Sydney, are recruiting participants from the community to take part in a randomised trial comparing the effectiveness of two treatments to prevent a recurrence of back pain. Specifically, we are looking for participants who have had a recent episode of back but have recovered from it within 3 months.

These participants will be randomised to either a free 12-week exercise therapy program supervised by a physiotherapist or an advice and education session with a physiotherapist. Both treatments will be tailored to participants' needs. Participants will be followed-up fortnightly for 12 months by replying to brief and simple email or SMS surveys. Physical activity levels will also be monitored by using a pedometer.

Ethics approval number: 2015/728

Eligibility

Participants will be included if they meet the following inclusion criteria:

1. Recovered from a previous episode of low back pain within the last three months;

2. Being currently employed (including self-employed)

How to participate

You can reach out to us by:

Email: sph.tops@sydney.edu.au

Phone: 02 86276691

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TOPSLowBackPain/