Table 6

Data from the epidemiologic literature on back pain in boys and girls (age included)

Balague et al. [ 1 ] Brattberg et al. [ 25 ] Taimela et al. [ 6 ] Hakala et al. [ 18 ] Watson et al. [ 12 ]
Country SwitzerlandSwedenFinlandFinlandEngland
Design Cross SectionalCross sectional + follow upCross sectionalCross sect. + follow upCross sectional
Study sample Schoolchildren in primary and secondary school- one school districtPupils from 26 urban schoolsPupils from 45 different public schoolsPopulation register. All Finns born on adjacent dates in summer (1985–9, 1993–7)Pupils from secondary schools; state + private, urban + rural
Response rate 99%87%82%77%92% (LBP)
Valid sample size 16661245/ 4711171626771376 (LBP)
Data collection QuestionnaireQuestionnaireQuestionnaireQuestionnaireQuestionnaire
Age group 7-17(mean 12)8, 11, 13, 177, 10, 14, 1612,14,16,18(12.6, 14.6, 16.6, 18.6)11-14
Definition of back pain LBP, BP (=all spinal pain)Do you often have back pain?LBP interfering with school/leisure activities + recurrent LBP past 12 monthsBack or neck pain during the past half a yearLBP for one day or longer in the past month
Gender Girls > Boys (+BP ++LBP)Girls > Boys all age groups. Significant among the 13 and 17-year-old pupilsNo general difference. Girls > boys in recurrent LBP reportingGirls > boys No interaction between sex but increasing trend was seen in girls – boys U shaped curveGirls > Boys
Age (prevalence increase) >13Trend of more long-lasting BP in older age groups. Especially among girlsRecurrent LBP increases > 14, 16Prevalence increased with ageIncrease with age in girls and boys