Burton, A. Kim, Balague, F., Cardon, G., Eriksen, H.R., Henrotin, Yves, Lahad, A., Leclerc, Annette, Muller, G. and van der Beek, A.J. (2006) European guidelines for prevention in low back pain. European Spine Journal, 15 (Supple). s136-s168. ISSN 1432-0932

Summary of the concepts of prevention in low back
pain (LBP):
• The general nature and course of commonly experienced LBP means that there is limited scope for preventing its incidence (first-time onset). Prevention, in the context of this guideline, is focused primarily on reduction of the impact and consequences of LBP.
• Primary causative mechanisms remain largely undetermined: risk factor modification will not necessarily achieve prevention.
• There is considerable scope, in principle, for prevention of the consequences of LBP – e.g. episodes (recurrence), care seeking, disability, and workloss.
• Different interventions and outcomes will be appropriate for different target populations (general population, workers, and children) yet inevitably there is overlap.
• Interventions that are essentially treatments in the clinical environment, focused on management of current symptoms, are not considered as ‘prevention’ for the purposes of this guideline: they are covered in the accompanying clinical guidelines

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