Category Archives: Back Pain

Chronic Back Pain

J Rehabil Med. 2011 Jul;43(8):689-94. doi: 10.2340/16501977-0830.

Effects of whole body vibration therapy on main outcome measures for chronic non-specific low back pain: a single-blind randomized controlled trial.

del Pozo-Cruz B, Hernández Mocholí MA, Adsuar JC, Parraca JA, Muro I, Gusi N.

Source: Faculty of Sports Sciences, University of Extremadura, Spain.


OBJECTIVE:  The aim of this study was to determine whether a 12-week course of low-frequency vibrating board therapy is a feasible therapy for non-specific chronic low back pain, and whether it improves the main outcome measures.

DESIGN:  Randomized controlled trial.

PATIENTS:  A total of 50 patients with non-specific low back pain were included. They were randomly assigned to either a vibrating plate via reciprocation therapy group (n = 25) or a control group (n = 25).

METHODS:  The 12-week vibration therapy programme consisted of a total of 24 training sessions (2 times/week, with 1 day of rest between sessions). Assessments of the main outcome measures for non-specific low back pain were performed at baseline and at 12 weeks.

RESULTS:  In the vibration therapy group there was a statistically significant improvement, of 20.37% (p = 0.031) in the Postural Stability Index (anterior-posterior); 25.15% (p = 0.013) in the Oswestry Index; 9.31% in the Roland Morris Index (p = 0.001); 8.57% (p = 0.042) in EuroQol 5D-3L; 20.29% (p = 0.002) in the Sens test; 24.13% (p = 0.006) in visual analogue scale back; and 16.58% (p = 0.008) in the Progressive Isoinertial Lifting Evaluation test.

CONCLUSION:  A 12-week course of low-frequency vibrating board therapy is feasible and may represent a novel physical therapy for patients with non-specific low back pain.

PMID: 21687923

Chronic Low Back Treatment

Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2002 Sep 1;27(17):1829-34.

Treatment of chronic lower back pain with lumbar extension and whole-body vibration exercise: a randomized controlled trial.

Rittweger J, Just K, Kautzsch K, Reeg P, Felsenberg D.

Source: Institut für Physiologie, Freie Universität Berlin, Berlin, Germany.


STUDY DESIGN:  A randomized controlled trial with a 6-month follow-up period was conducted.

OBJECTIVE:  To compare lumbar extension exercise and whole-body vibration exercise for chronic lower back pain.

SUMMARY OF BACKGROUND DATA:  Chronic lower back pain involves muscular as well as connective and neural systems. Different types of physiotherapy are applied for its treatment. Industrial vibration is regarded as a risk factor. Recently, vibration exercise has been developed as a new type of physiotherapy. It is thought to activate muscles via reflexes.

METHODS:  In this study, 60 patients with chronic lower back pain devoid of “specific” spine diseases, who had a mean age of 51.7 years and a pain history of 13.1 years, practiced either isodynamic lumbar extension or vibration exercise for 3 months. Outcome measures were lumbar extension torque, pain sensation (visual analog scale), and pain-related disability (pain disability index).

RESULTS:  A significant and comparable reduction in pain sensation and pain-related disability was observed in both groups. Lumbar extension torque increased significantly in the vibration exercise group (30.1 Nm/kg), but significantly more in the lumbar extension group (+59.2 Nm/kg; SEM 10.2; P < 0.05). No correlation was found between gain in lumbar torque and pain relief or pain-related disability (P > 0.2).

CONCLUSIONS: The current data indicate that poor lumbar muscle force probably is not the exclusive cause of chronic lower back pain. Different types of exercise therapy tend to yield comparable results. Interestingly, well-controlled vibration may be the cure rather than the cause of lower back pain.

PMID: 12221343 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]

Lumbosacral Repositioning Improves

Aust J Physiother. 2005;51(4):259-63.

The effect of weight-bearing exercise with low frequency, whole body vibration on lumbosacral proprioception: a pilot study on normal subjects.

Fontana TL, Richardson CA, Stanton WR

Source:  School of Health and Rehabilitation Science, The University of Queensland, St Lucia, QLD 4072, Australia


Purpose:  Patients with low back pain (LBP) often present with impaired proprioception of the lumbopelvic region. For this reason, proprioception training usually forms part of the rehabilitation protocols. New exercise equipment that produces whole body, low frequency vibration (WBV) has been developed to improve muscle function, and reportedly improves proprioception. The aim of this pilot study was to investigate whether weightbearing exercise given in conjunction with WBV would affect lumbosacral position sense in healthy individuals.

Method: For this purpose, twenty-five young individuals with no LBP were assigned randomly to an experimental or control group. The experimental group received WBV for five minutes while holding a static, semi-squat position. The control group adopted the same weightbearing position for equal time but received no vibration. A two-dimensional motion analysis system measured the repositioning accuracy of pelvic tilting in standing.

Results: The experimental (WBV) group demonstrated a significant improvement in repositioning accuracy over time (mean 0.78 degrees) representing 39% improvement

Conclusion:  It was concluded that WBV may induce improvements in lumbosacral repositioning accuracy when combined with a weightbearing exercise. Future studies with WBV should focus on evaluating its effects with different types of exercise, the exercise time needed for optimal outcomes, and the effects on proprioception deficits in LBP patients.

PMID: 16321133