What’s This Research About?
This systematic review and meta-analysis evaluates the relative effectiveness of low back prevention strategies using Bayesian network meta-analysis (an analysis that integrates the results of multiple studies in which multiple treatments are compared). To the authors’ knowledge, this is the first network meta-analysis that includes all researched interventional strategies for the prevention of LBP episodes and LBP-related work absenteeism.
Some of the advantages of a network meta-analysis are that they can simultaneously compare more than two treatments and show relative effect estimates for all treatment comparisons.
TITLE: Exercise alone and exercise combined with education both prevent episodes of low back pain and related absenteeism: systematic review and network meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) aimed at preventing low back pain
PUBLICATION: British Journal of Sports Medicine
AUTHORS: Rongzhong Huang, Jie Ning, Vivienne H. Chuter, Jeffrey Bruce Taylor, Demoulin Christophe, Zengdong Meng, Yu Xu, Lihong Jiang
Effect size: A quantitative measure of the magnitude of something. A measure of the difference between treatment and control on an outcome. Measures the strength of the relationship between two variables.
Low back pain (LBP): A condition that causes more disability globally than any other condition. LBP causes a decrease in productivity, work absenteeism, personal income loss, increased disability, increased medical resource use, and early retirement. LBP is caused by a combination of factors, including variables related to anatomy, physical habits, occupation, behavior, anxiety, and depression.
Meta-analysis: statistical techniques that are used to synthesize data from several studies into a single, quantitative summary effect size or estimate.
Risk factor: conditions that increase your chances of developing a condition or disease
Non-modifiable risk factors: risk factors that cannot be changed
Modifiable risk factors: risk factors that can be changed
Non-modifiable risk factors for developing LBP: sex (female) and age (older individuals)
Modifiable risk factors for developing LBP: physical activity/sedentary lifestyle, obesity, job and occupational exposure, and psychosocial predictors.
Systematic review: a detailed and comprehensive predetermined search strategy. The goal of a systematic review is to reduce bias by identifying, evaluating, and synthesizing all of the relevant studies on a particular subject.