Prevalence and Tracking of Back Pain From Childhood to Adolescence
SOURCE: BMC Musculo Disord. 2011 (May 16); 12: 98 ~ FULL TEXT
Per Kjaer, Niels Wedderkopp, Lars Korsholm,
and Charlotte Leboeuf-Yde
Institute of Sports Science and Clinical Biomechanics,
Part of Clinical Locomotion Network,
University of Southern Denmark,
Campusvej 55, DK-5230, Odense, Denmark
BACKGROUND: It is generally acknowledged that back pain (BP) is a common condition already in childhood. However, the development until early adulthood is not well understood and, in particular, not the individual tracking pattern. The objectives of this paper are to show the prevalence estimates of BP, low back pain (LBP), mid back pain (MBP), neck pain (NP), and care-seeking because of BP at three different ages (9, 13 and 15 years) and how the BP reporting tracks over these age groups over three consecutive surveys.
METHODS: A longitudinal cohort study was carried out from the years of 1997 till 2005, collecting interview data from children who were sampled to be representative of Danish schoolchildren. BP was defined overall and specifically in the three spinal regions as having reported pain within the past month. The prevalence estimates and the various patterns of BP reporting over time are presented as percentages.
RESULTS: Of the 771 children sampled, 62%, 57%, and 58% participated in the three back surveys and 34% participated in all three. The prevalence estimates for children at the ages of 9, 13, and 15, respectively, were for back pain (BP) 33%, 28%, and 48%; for low back pain (LBP) 4%, 22%, and 36%; for MBP 20%, 13%, and 35%; and for neck pain (NP) 10%, 7%, and 15%. Seeking care for BP increased from 6% and 8% at the two youngest ages to 34% at the oldest. Only 7% of the children who participated in all three surveys reported BP each time and 30% of these always reported no pain. The patterns of development differed for the three spinal regions and between genders. Status at the previous survey predicted status at the next survey, so that those who had pain before were more likely to report pain again and vice versa. This was most pronounced for care-seeking.
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