Session Type: ACR Concurrent Abstract Session
Session Time: 4:30PM-6:00PM
Low back pain (LBP) causes enormous financial and disability burden worldwide, and therapeutic options have limited efficacy. This burden could be potentially reduced by gaining an understanding of the predictors of LBP in order to optimize preventive strategies. As having previous episodes of LBP are predictive of future recurrences, understanding the risk factors associated with LBP in early adulthood are particularly important. There is evidence that women are more likely to suffer from LBP and utilise health care to a greater extent in comparison to men, and there is a paucity of data examining predictors of LBP, such as weight and physical activity, in young women. The aim of this study was to identify whether modifiable risk factors, weight and physical activity, were predictive of low back pain in young adult women.
Participants took part in a large population-based cohort study, the Australian Longitudinal Study of Women’s Health. Community dwelling women born between 1973 and 1978 were randomly selected from the national health insurance scheme database, which includes most permanent residents of Australia. Women were recruited nationally with intentional oversampling from rural and remote areas. Women completed questionnaires three-yearly between 2000 and 2012. In year 2000, 9,688 women completed the questionnaire and 83% completed follow up questionnaires 12 years later. Self-reported data on back pain, weight, height, age, education status, physical activity, and depression were collected at each of the five surveys.
In this cohort of women at baseline, median age was 24.6 years and 41% had self-reported back pain in the last 12 months. Women reporting back pain were more likely to seek help (38.2% vs. 3.4%, p<0.001) and be unemployed (19.7% vs. 15.7%, p<0.001) compared with those without back pain. Inadequate physical activity and depression were independent predictors of back pain over the following 12 years (both p<0.001), after adjusting for age, weight, height and education status. For every 5kg higher weight at baseline, there was a 5% (95% CI 1.04 – 1.06) increased risk of back pain over the next 12 years. Higher weight at each survey also predicted subsequent back pain risk three years later, with the adverse effects of weight being present at all levels of physical activity.
Back pain is common in community-based young adult women. Higher weight, inadequate levels of physical activity and depression were all independent predictors of back pain over the following decade. Furthermore, the adverse effects of weight on back pain were not mitigated by physical activity. Our findings highlight the role of both weight gain and physical inactivity in back pain among young adult women and suggest potential opportunities for future prevention.
To cite this abstract in AMA style:Brady S, Hussain SM, Brown W, Heritier S, Billah B, Wang Y, Teede H, Urquhart D, Cicutinni F. Weight Predicts Back Pain in Young Adult Women, Independent of Physical Activity: Data from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health [abstract]. Arthritis Rheumatol. 2015; 67 (suppl 10). https://acrabstracts.org/abstract/weight-predicts-back-pain-in-young-adult-women-independent-of-physical-activity-data-from-the-australian-longitudinal-study-on-womens-health/. Accessed February 18, 2020.
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ACR Meeting Abstracts - https://acrabstracts.org/abstract/weight-predicts-back-pain-in-young-adult-women-independent-of-physical-activity-data-from-the-australian-longitudinal-study-on-womens-health/