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Review: patients with acute low back pain and associated disability improve substantially within 1 month
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 Q What is the natural and clinical course of acute low back pain, and what are the prognostic factors that influence this course?

Clinical impact ratings GP/FP/Primary care ★★★★★☆☆ Rheumatology ★★★★☆☆☆

METHODS

Embedded ImageData sources:

Medline, CINAHL, and EMBASE/Excerpta Medica (all up to March 2002), and tracking references of included studies through the Science Citation Index.

Embedded ImageStudy selection and analysis:

prospective studies published in any language that described the source of participants and method of sampling; used an inception cohort of patients with low back pain or sciatica for <3 weeks; had a follow up period ⩾3 months; and reported on symptoms, health related quality of life, disability, or return to work. Studies that recruited patients with specific diseases such as arthritis, fracture, tumour, or cauda equina syndrome were excluded.

Embedded ImageOutcomes:

pain, disability, return to work, and recurrences. …

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