The clinical effects of intensive, specific exercise on chronic low back pain: a controlled study of 895 consecutive patients with 1-year follow up

Orthopedics. 1995 Oct;18(10):971-81. doi: 10.3928/0147-7447-19951001-05.


Eight hundred ninety-five consecutive chronic low back pain patients were evaluated. Six hundred twenty-seven completed the program. One hundred sixty-one began, but dropped out, and 107 were recommended for treatment but did not undergo treatment for various reasons. Average duration of symptoms prior to evaluation was 26 months. Forty-seven percent of patients were workers' compensation patients. The primary treatment was intensive, specific exercise using firm pelvic stabilization to isolate and rehabilitate the lumbar spine musculature. Patients were encouraged to work hard to achieve specific goals. Seventy-six percent of patients completing the program had excellent or good results. At 1-year follow up 94% of patients with good or excellent results reported maintaining their improvement. Results in the control group were significantly poorer in all areas surveyed except employment.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Controlled Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Exercise Therapy* / economics
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Low Back Pain / economics
  • Low Back Pain / etiology
  • Low Back Pain / physiopathology
  • Low Back Pain / rehabilitation*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Muscle, Skeletal / physiopathology
  • Prospective Studies
  • Treatment Outcome