Chronic disease self-management program for low back pain in the elderly

Mitchell Haas, Elyse Groupp, John Muench, Dale Kraemer, Ken Brummel-Smith, Rajiv Sharma, Bonnie Ganger, Michael Attwood, Alisa Fairweather

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

70 Scopus citations


Objective: To evaluate the effectiveness of Stanford's Chronic Disease Self-Management Program (CDSMP) for chronic low back pain (LBP) in older Americans. Design: Randomized controlled trial. Setting: Community-based program offered at 12 locations. Subjects: Community-dwelling seniors (n = 109) aged 60 and older with chronic LBP of mechanical origin. Methods: Patients were randomly allocated to the CDSMP or to a 6-month, wait-list control group. The program included one 2.5-hour session per week for 6 weeks. Outcomes evaluated at 6 months included 100-point modified Von Korff pain and disability scales; days with pain and disability; SF-36 general health, energy-fatigue, and emotional well-being scales; 2 scales from the Arthritis Self-Efficacy Scale, self-care attitudes/behaviors, and health services utilization. Results: For pain at 6 months, the primary outcome, the adjusted mean difference between the program and control, was -1.0 (P = .835). There was a sizable advantage for the program in disability averaged over the course of the entire 6-month study (-9.2, P = .027), but not at the 6-month follow-up (-5.8, P = .278). There was an interaction between intervention and baseline disability days favoring the program for higher baseline values (P = .007). The CDSMP affected emotional well-being (7.6, P = .037) and energy-fatigue (5.1, P = .274). There were no differences for self-efficacy, pain days, and general health. Conclusion: There was no advantage for the CDSMP over a wait-list control for improving pain, general health, self-efficacy, and self-care attitudes in older Americans with chronic LBP. A benefit was suggested for emotional well-being, fatigue, functional disability, and days with disability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)228-237
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics
Issue number4
StatePublished - May 2005


  • Chronic Pain
  • Elderly
  • Low Back Pain
  • Patient Education
  • Self-Management
  • Utilization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chiropractics


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