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Papers of the Week

Papers: 28 Dec 2019 - 3 Jan 2020

Human Studies

2019 12 29

BMJ Open



Is there a causal relationship between acute stage sensorimotor cortex activity and the development of chronic low back pain? a protocol and statistical analysis plan.


Jenkins L, Chang W-J, Buscemi V, Cunningham C, Cashin A, McAuley JH, Liston M, Schabrun SM
BMJ Open. 2019 12 29; 9(12):e035792.
PMID: 31888948.


Why some people develop chronic pain following an acute episode of low back pain is unknown. Recent cross-sectional studies have suggested a relationship between aberrant sensorimotor cortex activity and pain persistence. The UPWaRD (Understanding persistent Pain Where it ResiDes) cohort study is the first prospective, longitudinal investigation of sensorimotor cortex activity in low back pain. This paper describes the development of a causal model and statistical analysis plan for investigating the causal effect of sensorimotor cortex activity on the development of chronic low back pain.