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Papers of the Week

Papers: 18 May 2019 - 24 May 2019

2019 Jun

J Orthop Sports Phys Ther



Can Biomechanics Research Lead to More Effective Treatment of Low Back Pain? A Viewpoint-Counterpoint Debate.


Cholewicki J, Breen A, Popovich JM, Reeves PN, Sahrmann SA, Van Dillen LR, Vleeming A, Hodges PW
J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2019 Jun; 49(6):425-436.
PMID: 31092123.


Although biomechanics play a role in the development of low back pain (LBP), and perhaps in the persistent and/or recurrent nature of LBP, there is debate regarding whether biomechanics alone can provide the basis for intervention. Biomechanics, which refers to the mechanics of the body including its neuromuscular control, has been extensively studied in LBP. But, can gains be made in understanding LBP by research focused on this component of the biology in the multifactorial bio-psycho-social problem of LBP? This commentary considers whether biomechanics research has the potential to advance treatment of LBP, and how likely it is that this research will lead to better treatment strategies for LBP. A viewpoint-counterpoint format is taken to present both sides of the argument. This is considered first from the perspective of the challenges faced by an approach that considers biomechanics in isolation. Second, 3 models are described that place substantial emphasis on biomechanical factors. Third, reactions to each viewpoint are presented as a foundation for further research and clinical practice to progress understanding of the place for biomechanics in guiding treatment for LBP. .