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Pain. 1991 Jul;46(1):35-41.

Health locus of control beliefs and psychological distress as predictors for treatment outcome in low-back pain patients: results of a 3-month follow-up of a controlled intervention study.

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Rehabilitation Foundation, Helsinki, Finland.


Association of health locus of control beliefs (HLC) and psychological distress (GHQ-12) with short-term outcome of low-back pain (LBP) rehabilitation was studied in patients with chronic or recurrent LBP (n = 459; aged 35-54 years; 63% men). These patients were randomly assigned to 3 study groups, namely the inpatient, the outpatient and the control group. The results showed a significant decrease in disability due to LBP in the 2 treated groups; in addition, the accomplishment and frequency of back exercises was significantly better in the treated groups. HLC beliefs were associated with a successful outcome; those patients with stronger internal beliefs had gained more from the treatment, had learned their exercises better and had done the exercises more frequently during the follow-up period. Symptoms of psychological distress were significantly associated with poorer accomplishment of back exercises.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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