A new therapy to relieve chronic back pain

Previous research has proven that the nervous system of patients with chronic back pain behaves differently from other people.

Nine out of ten French people have already suffered from back pain. For them, it is not always easy to find a solution to live normally and keep the pain away. Australian researchers from the University of New South Wales (UNSW) and Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA) may have a solution and an alternative to drugs.

This new approach is based on the rehabilitation of the communication between the back and the brain, a therapy which bears the name of “sensimotor rehabilitation”. Specifically, it focuses on the relationship between the back and the brain. These findings were published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The basis of this study, the researchers started from the fact that those who suffer from chronic low back pain may have a change in the way the brain processes pain.

“People were happier”

This research was conducted with 276 patients divided into two groups. The first followed twelve weeks of sham treatments and the other group followed the same duration of “sensorimotor rehabilitation”. And the results seem conclusive. “What we observed in our trial was a clinically significant effect on pain intensity and a clinically significant effect on disability. People were happier, they said their backs felt better and their quality life was better. It also appears that these effects were sustained over the long term; twice as many people were fully recovered,” said Professor James McAuley of the UNSW School of Health Sciences. and NeuRA.

According to Professor McAuley, what makes sensorimotor rehabilitation different is that it looks at the whole system: what people think about their back, how the back and the brain communicate, how the back is moved and its fitness. “People with back pain often hear that their back is vulnerable and needs to be protected. This changes how we filter and interpret information from our back and how we move it. Over time, the back becomes less in form and the way the back and the brain communicate is disrupted in a way that seems to reinforce the notion that the back is vulnerable and needs to be protected. The treatment we have designed aims to break this self-perpetuating cycle,” concludes the Professor McAuley.

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