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The global problem of low back pain

Lower back pain continues to be a leading cause of disability across the globe and affected as many as 577 million people in 2017. As many as 85-95% of people who present to primary health providers for lower back pain will be of a non-specific cause. What does this mean? It means that the majority of lower back pain cases do not have a cause which include fracture, inflammatory diseases, malignancies or infections, and can mostly be treated with physical therapy.

Interestingly, the peak age group for the greatest number of people with lower back pain across the globe is 50-54 years old. The number of people suffering with lower back pain is increasing as the global population augments and ages.

Management of patients with low back pain should include the use of the best available evidence, clinician expertise, meeting patient values and expectations, and community resources.

International Association for the Study of Pain


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