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Journal of Craniovertebral Junction and Spine
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Year : 2013  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 21-24

What is the source of low back pain?

1 Neuroscience Research Center, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, Iran
2 Medical Student Research Committee, Department of Biological Sciences, California State University, Stanislaus, Turlock, United States
3 Persia Research Center, Sadi Hospital, Isfahan, Iran
4 Medical Student Research Committee, Research Assistant, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran
5 Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran

Correspondence Address:
Hamidreza Shemshaki
Neuroscience Research Center, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman
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Source of Support: Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0974-8237.121620

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Aims: Determining the source of low back pain (LBP) is still controversial. This study was designed to determine the source of LBP and its relations with age and gender. Settings and Design: A retrospective chart review at Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran. Materials and Methods: A total of 1,125 patients were evaluated to determine the sources of their LBP with physical examinations, imaging, injections, and other laboratory examinations, if needed. The patients were divided into five groups based on their ages. Frequencies of the sources of pain were assessed in the five age groups, and the assessments were done separately by gender. Statistical Analysis Used: Independent t-test, analysis of variance (ANOVA), chi-square test. Results: The patients enrolled in this study consisted of 527 males (46.8%) and 598 females (53.2%). The frequencies of the sources of pain were, in descending order, spine (689, 61.2%), no cause found (163, 14.5%), spine with sacroiliac joint (SIJ) (72, 6.4%), spine with hip (65, 5.8%), SIJ (60, 5.3%), hip (44, 3.9%), spine along with hip and SIJ (20, 1.8%), hip with SIJ (8, 0.7%), and other diseases (4, 0.4%). There were significant statistical differences between the genders and mean ages for different sources (P = 0.03 and 0.000, respectively). Conclusions: This study showed that the spine was the main source of LBP in all age groups. Physicians should always be alert for other sources in middle-aged and older patients. Future studies with long-term follow-up for determining the benefits of treatments are warranted.

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