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Anesth Essays Res. 2019 Apr-Jun;13(2):395-402. doi: 10.4103/aer.AER_196_18.

Pregnancy-induced Low Back Pain in Indian Women: Prevalence, Risk Factors, and Correlation with Serum Calcium Levels.

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Department of Anesthesiology and Critical Care, University College of Medical Sciences and Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital, Delhi, India.



Pregnancy-induced low back pain (LBP) is a common problem during the pregnancy which usually begins between the 20th and the 28th weeks of gestation, and the exact duration varies.


The aim of this study is to determine the prevalence of LBP including pelvic girdle pain (PGP) and its various aspects such as nature, intensity, character, radiation, circadian pattern, and its correlation with serum calcium levels.

Setting and Design:

This was a cross-sectional survey conducted in a tertiary care hospital in the capital of Delhi.

Materials and Methods:

In this cross-sectional study, 200 pregnant women completed a questionnaire and also underwent clinical examinations if PGP is suspected. The clinical examination included various pain provocation tests including active straight leg raise test. Venous blood samples were drawn to evaluate the serum calcium levels in pregnant women complaining of back pain. Possible associating factors were studied by nonparametric tests and logistic regression analysis.

Statistical Analysis:

Bivariant correlation of serum calcium levels, total duration of pain, and Visual Analog Scale score was done with various factors such as parity, socioeconomic status, and nature of pain.


The point prevalence of LBP was found to be 80% with a significantly lower prevalence of PGP, i.e., 2%, when compared to the international figures. Majority of women graded their pain as dull aching type (47.5%) and moderate to severe in intensity. The circadian rhythm of back pain was observed in 56% of the patients, and out of that, insomnia was complained by 33% of the patients. Limitation of physical activity was observed in 62.5% of the patients.


A negative correlation was observed between the serum calcium levels and parity; however, a positive correlation between the intensity of pain and parity was observed.


Female; low back pain; pelvic girdle pain; pregnancy; serum calcium

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