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Behave Yourself!

Behavioral modification is a prescribed treatment of many illnesses, and a common treatment of chronic low back pain. The main assumption of a behavioral approach is that pain and disability are not only influenced by physical disease, but also by psychological and social factors.

A recent study published in Spine reviewed previous literature reporting on behavioral modification to determine whether one’s attitude is more or less important than other treatments of chronic low back pain, and which type of behavioral treatment is most effective. Data, gathered by means of a computer-aided medical database search, was pooled and investigated as to behavioral outcomes of a myriad of chronic low back pain cases.

The results of the study showed that there is strong evidence that your attitude, modified by behavioral treatments, has a positive effect on pain intensity levels and overall outcomes of patients with chronic low back pain when compared to patients without behavioral treatment.


Van Tulder MW, Ostelo R, Vlaeyen JWS, et al. Behavioral treatment for chronic low back pain: a systematic review within the framework of the Cochrane back review group. Spine 2000:26(3), pp. 270-281.

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