Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Significant long-term benefit for low back pain revealed by major study

21.08.2008
A major study led by a Southampton researcher has found significant evidence that the Alexander Technique can provide long-term benefit for people with chronic or recurrent low back pain.

The study, one of the first of its kind, is being published online today by the BMJ at BMJ.com.

It shows that lessons in the Alexander Technique provide an individualised approach to reducing back pain through the teaching of life-long self-care skills that help people recognise, understand and avoid poor habits affecting postural tone and neuromuscular co-ordination.

Up until now there has been no good evidence of the long-term effectiveness of Alexander Technique lessons.

But the latest research by Professor Paul Little of the University of Southampton, in conjunction with Professor Debbie Sharp, of Bristol University, shows that the technique can help long-term back pain.

The multi-centre clinical trial involved 579 patients and compared 24 Alexander Technique lessons, six Alexander Technique lessons, six sessions of classical massage and normal GP care.

Half of the patients allocated to each of these groups also received a GP prescription for aerobic exercise (30 minutes of brisk walking or the equivalent each day), followed by behavioural counselling from a practice nurse.

The study showed that 24 Alexander Technique lessons led to important improvements in function, quality of life and a reduction in the number of days the patients suffered pain.

One year after the trial started, the average number of activities limited by back pain had fallen by 42 per cent, and the number of days in pain was only three a month compared with 21 days in the control group.

Massage also helped over the three months but the effect on activities was no longer significant after one year.

Exercise prescription alone had significant but modest effects on activities at both three and 12 months. However, a series of six Alexander Technique lessons followed by GP-prescribed exercise was about 70 per cent as beneficial as 24 Alexander Technique lessons at one year.

Professor Little said: "This is a significant step forward in the long-term management of low back pain.

"The results of this study revealed that the Alexander Technique can help back pain; it probably does this by limiting muscle spasm, strengthening postural muscles, improving co-ordination and flexibility and decompressing the spine.

"This means that patients can have fewer activities or functions limited by back pain."

The trial was funded by the Medical Research Council and the NHS Research and Development fund.

Sarah Watts | alfa
Further information:
http://www.soton.ac.uk

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Drone vs. truck deliveries: Which create less carbon pollution?
31.05.2017 | University of Washington

nachricht New study: How does Europe become a leading player for software and IT services?
03.04.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für System- und Innovationsforschung (ISI)

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making Waves

Computer scientists use wave packet theory to develop realistic, detailed water wave simulations in real time. Their results will be presented at this year’s SIGGRAPH conference.

Think about the last time you were at a lake, river, or the ocean. Remember the ripples of the water, the waves crashing against the rocks, the wake following...

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Nanostructures taste the rainbow

29.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

New technique unveils 'matrix' inside tissues and tumors

29.06.2017 | Life Sciences

Cystic fibrosis alters the structure of mucus in airways

29.06.2017 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>