Relative effectiveness of three treatment protocols with and without brace aided pelvic stabilization in patients with chronic low back pain
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Background: Wong and Deyo (2001) believe that 98% of the LBP cases are musculoskeletal (mechanical) in origin and 51,7% of these individuals are chronic sufferers (Andersson, 1999). Weak spinal stability muscles have shown to be an aetiological cause (Chok, Lee and Latimer, 1999). Wolff, Weinik and Maitin (2003) agree a combination of brace aided pelvic stabilization combined with a spinal stability programme may be the best treatment intervention for chronic low back pain (CLBP). Objective: The purpose of this research was to determine the relative effectiveness of three treatment protocols with (Group A-Groovi-SI-Belt®; Group B-standard SI belt) and without (Group C-control) brace aided pelvic stabilization in patients with CLBP. Method: Forty-six patients suffering from CLBP were randomly allocated to one of the three treatment groups. A spinal stability programme was progressively taught and enforced in all three groups. Weekly follow-up consultations were required to assess subjective and objective outcomes of the three treatment interventions. Outcomes were obtained by using the Numerical Pain Rating Scale (NRS); Quebec disability scale; Active straight leg raiser test; Biofeedback device and the static trunk extensor endurance test. Results: Data was analysed using the SPSS version 15.0 (SPSS Inc. Chicago, Ill, USA).Comparing pre and post outcome measurements using a p value <0.05 which was considered to be statistically significant. All three treatments improved most outcomes significantly over time. The Groovi-SI-Belt® showed non significant trends of quicker rates of improvement. . Conclusion: This study revealed that brace aided pelvic stabilization combined with a spinal stability programme was a beneficial treatment intervention with the Group A being superior to Group B.