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 A sudden drop in outdoor temperature increases the risk of respiratory infections
11.01.2017 | University of Gothenburg

nachricht Urbanization to convert 300,000 km2 of prime croplands
27.12.2016 | Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change (MCC) gGmbH

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: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

Im Focus: How to inflate a hardened concrete shell with a weight of 80 t

At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).

Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...

Im Focus: Bacterial Pac Man molecule snaps at sugar

Many pathogens use certain sugar compounds from their host to help conceal themselves against the immune system. Scientists at the University of Bonn have now, in cooperation with researchers at the University of York in the United Kingdom, analyzed the dynamics of a bacterial molecule that is involved in this process. They demonstrate that the protein grabs onto the sugar molecule with a Pac Man-like chewing motion and holds it until it can be used. Their results could help design therapeutics that could make the protein poorer at grabbing and holding and hence compromise the pathogen in the host. The study has now been published in “Biophysical Journal”.

The cells of the mouth, nose and intestinal mucosa produce large quantities of a chemical called sialic acid. Many bacteria possess a special transport system...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

Nothing will happen without batteries making it happen!

05.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Water - as the underlying driver of the Earth’s carbon cycle

17.01.2017 | Earth Sciences

Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

17.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Smart homes will “LISTEN” to your voice

17.01.2017 | Architecture and Construction

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>