An agenda for primary care research on low back pain

Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 1996 Dec 15;21(24):2880-4. doi: 10.1097/00007632-199612150-00019.


In October 1995, an International Forum for Primary Care Research on Low Back Pain was held in Seattle, Washington. The Forum focused on the broad range of decisions that patients and their primary care providers make concerning how to best manage low back pain. In addition to providing a venue for summarizing the current state of knowledge about these issues, a major goal of the Forum was to draft an agenda for future primary care research on low back pain. Previous efforts to delineate priority areas for research in this field have emphasized the concerns of basic scientists, pain specialists, and surgeons while ignoring the major concerns of patients and providers in the primary care setting, where the majority of patients with back pain are seen. This article describes the group consensus process used to draft an agenda, presents the items included, and contrasts this primary care agenda with agendas for back pain research developed primarily by specialists. This agenda identifies for the first time the clinical and methodologic issues that primary care experts on back pain consider to be of highest priority. Hopefully, it will help focus future primary care research and encourage funding agencies to give priority to the issues identified.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Low Back Pain / rehabilitation*
  • Primary Health Care*
  • Research*