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Relative therapeuctic efficacy of vertebral mobilization technique in the management of mechanical low back pain

HAK Onuwe


This work was a prospective study to investigate the relative therapeutic efficacy of vertical oscillatory pressure (VOP) among fifteen (15) subjects who presented with mechanical low back pain (MLBP). Two to five sets of oscillatory movements depending on the severity of pain, each set not lasting more than 30 seconds or a count of 15 to 20 oscillations were administered on each subject. The total number of treatment sessions recorded throughout the study was 32 with mean session of 2. No subject received more than five (5) sessions of treatment to become it for discharge. Pre- and post-treatment pain scores among the subjects were compared to determine if there was any significant difference in the severity of pain. The difference in the severity of pain perception before and after treatment was statistically significant (P<0.05). Twelve (80%) subjects reported to the department after the follow-up period of 24 weeks that they were pain-free and had gone back to their normal activities of daily living (ADL). The outcome of this study suggests therefore that it may take less than 3 sessions or less than one week to treat the type of LBP described in this study with VOP. Further more, the present study has demonstrated that the duration of pain relief by VOP may long outlast the short treatment period and relief may continue for a period of months or years for a significant number of subjects.

Keywords: low back pain, aetiology, treatment, comparison

Journal of Medicine in the Tropics Vol. 6(2) 2004: 8-14