Exploring the origin of low back pain subclassification: A scoping review protocol

Mary-Anne Jess, Sharon Hamilton, Cormac Ryan, Shaun Wellburn, Denis Martin

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

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Objective:This scoping review aims to map the different working definitions currently being used for the duration of acute, subacute and chronic low back pain (LBP), and to establish where these definitions originated and the rationale provided for the timeframes used.Introduction:Low back pain is a major social and economic problem worldwide. One of the most commonly used approaches to classify and manage patients with LBP is the traditional duration-based classification (acute, subacute and chronic). There are significant differences between studies in the timeframes used for what constitutes acute, subacute and chronic LBP. These discrepancies lead to heterogeneity in study results, making it difficult to compare or summarize findings.Inclusion criteria:Studies that include participants with non-specific LBP, regardless of sex, will be considered. Studies that include children or participants with specific causes of LBP will be excluded.Methods:The following electronic databases will be searched: MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL and PsycINFO. All types of studies will be included, provided they give a rationale for the definition of duration that they use. Studies will be limited to those published in English. Two independent reviewers will screen the retrieved articles against the eligibility criteria for the scoping review. A narrative synthesis will describe the definitions used in the study and the rationale given for the timeframes reported. This scoping review will give an insight into the background of the variation of timeframes used for duration-based classification of LBP.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1600-1606
Number of pages7
JournalJBI Database of Systematic Reviews and Implementation Reports
Issue number8
Early online date20 Mar 2019
Publication statusPublished - 14 Aug 2019


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