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Int J Clin Pract. 2003 Jan-Feb;57(1):9-13.

Clinical guidelines versus clinical practice in the management of low back pain.

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Rehabilitation Sciences Group, University of Ulster, Jordanstown, UK.


To date, there have been limited data on the implementation of evidenced-based clinical guidelines for low back pain (LBP). The aim of this study was to assess current management of LBP and evaluate to what extent clinical practice now reflects clinical guidelines. This survey involved the collection and analysis of data from the records of 200 patients who had been referred to a large teaching hospital with LBP Analysis indicated a high use of X-rays, with little evidence of initial biopsychosocial assessment. The most popular treatments were advice, active exercises and McKenzie therapy. Manipulation was rarely used. Overall, a low use of electrotherapy was recorded. The results emphasise how little the clinical guidelines have influenced the decisions of clinicians, and highlight the need to address the barriers to adopting an evidence-based approach in this area.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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