Function, Injury Severity Early After Back Injury are Predictors of Chronic Disability

Study Finds Patients Who Initially Visited a Chiropractor Had Reduced Odds of Chronic Disability.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009 – OrthoSupersite – Susan M. Rapp

Patients who had high scores on the Roland-Morris Disability Questionnaire in the first few weeks after a work-related back injury were at high risk for not having returned to work 1 year later, according to a prospective population-based cohort study conducted at the University of Washington, Seattle.

Judith A. Turner, PhD, and colleagues interviewed 1,885 injured workers 3 weeks after they filed a claim for a job-related back injury, identifying several key risk factors that were early predictors of long-term disability. None, she said, was as strong a predictor as having a Roland-Morris score between 18 and 24 on a scale of 0 to 24, representing individuals with the most functional disability.

“Those in the highest category of scores had 26 times the odds of still being disabled at 1 year,” she told Orthopedics Today. “That is pretty strong, and even after adjusting for all other baseline factors that might explain disability, they still have over seven times the odds of being disabled at 1 year.”

Read more about chronic disability and back pain

Rick Kaselj[email protected]
Registered Kinesiologist Specializing in Injury Rehabilitation
Surrey, BC, Canada

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