Some 16 million adults, 8 percent of all adults, experience persistent or chronic back pain and, as a result, are limited in certain daily activities. Back pain is the sixth most costly condition in the United States. Smith, Professor of Population Health Science, University of Dundee; and consultant in pain medicine, NHS Tayside, Scotland. Notably, the point prevalence and age-standardized ADL rate (per 100,000 people) in high-income southern Latin America, Asia-Pacific, Andean Latin America, Australasia, and western sub-Saharan Africa have increased, suggesting that factors beyond aging and increasing population.
If these are real increases, they are likely to be mainly due to aging and increasing population numbers (1). That said, the influence of this will vary from region to region, and there may also be other contributing factors, such as obesity, increased motorization (1), and a willingness to report pain. These strategies, Buchbinder and colleagues said, could reduce suffering and disability, as well as improve efficiency and effectiveness for patients with low back pain around the world. Burden of Spinal Pain Among Rural and Tribal Populations in Raigad District of Maharashtra State of India.
The overall increase in the burden of low back pain is likely due to aging and population growth, although there may be other contributing factors. Their findings suggest that very few, if any, population groups are completely immune to low back pain, and they write that it is an “extremely common symptom affecting all age groups, making it the most common disability worldwide. DLDs peaked in the middle-aged population and, therefore, the working-age population is most affected by the burden of low back pain. Globally, LBP remains the leading global cause of DLDs, yet it remains inadequately recognized as a burden of disease in the population, with the greatest disparity continuing between the level of burden and health service policy, research and response.
According to the ACP, prescription opioids should be the last resort for those suffering from low back pain, as the risk of addiction and overdose may outweigh the benefits.