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  • Cameron Oglesby

Have most back pain treatments been focusing on the wrong thing?


Millions of people worldwide literally suffer from back pain. But thanks to a new type of treatment, reported in The Lancet this week, some 394 people in Australia no longer do.


Traditional approaches to back pain – massage, spinal manipulation, medication, and injections – concentrate on specific body parts. But the new treatment, called Cognitive Functional Therapy (CFT), concentrates on the person.


According to Professor Peter O’Sullivan, from the Curtin School of Allied Health, who developed the treatment, it puts the patient at the center of care. “This new treatment takes on board the individual characteristics of the person who has been living with chronic back pain,”he explained.


In up to seven sessions over 12 weeks, 492 participants with severe and chronic back pain received personalized, intensive coaching sessions helping them make sense of their pain, along with retraining to move in less painful ways and build up confidence in movements and activities they’d been avoiding. After a six-month booster session and a half-year of follow-up questionnaires, more than 80 percent of the participants reported relief. “It was particularly rare and thrilling to discover that the significant reduction in pain and distress that these people living with chronic back pain experienced had remained right up to one year after trialing this new treatment," Professor O’Sullivan said.


Care is more effective when it focuses on the person receiving it. That’s why, from the day we first opened our doors, Senior Insights has focused on each of our clients as individual people, instead of just an assortment of pains and disabilities. It’s why, before we recommend any care at all, we conduct a thorough, three-part physical, emotional, cognitive, and psychosocial needs assessment with prospective clients and their families. And it’s why, having learned about each new client’s individual priorities, values, preferences, schedule, hobbies and interests, and trade-offs they're willing to make, we can create a custom-designed holistic coordinated senior care management plan that embodies them.


Please contact us to learn what a difference that can make.


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