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Table 3

 Cox regression model for time to complete recovery from acute low back pain (LBP) with hazard ratios (HR) and 95% confidence intervals

VariableCrude (unadjusted)Adjusted
HR (95% CI)P valueHR (95% CI)P value
Age (years)1.00 (0.99 to 1.00)0.0900.99 (0.99 to 1.00)0.004
Male1.05 (0.91 to 1.23)0.5001.01 (0.86 to 1.18)0.900
Pain/disability (χ2=31.32, P<0.001)
Pain intensity*0.79 (0.73 to 0.86)<0.0010.86 (0.77 to 0.96)0.009
Interference with function†0.85 (0.90 to 0.91)<0.0010.96 (0.88 to 1.05)0.339
Psychological (χ2=81.51, P<0.001)
Pain control§1.04 (1.01 to 1.07)0.0101.02 (0.99 to 1.05)0.267
Tension/anxiety¶0.94 (0.91 to 0.96)<0.0011.02 (0.99 to 1.06)0.208
Feelings of depression¶0.91 (0.89 to 0.93)<0.0010.94 (0.91 to 0.97)<0.001
Risk of persistence¶0.89 (0.87 to 0.92)<0.0010.92 (0.89 to 0.95)<0.001
Current history (χ2=36.72, P<0.001)
Compensable LBP¶0.56 (0.45 to 0.69)<0.0010.59 (0.47 to 0.74)<0.001
Currently taking medication for LBP0.75 (0.65 to 0.88)<0.0010.96 (0.81 to 1.14)0.657
Days of reduced activity due to LBP¶0.96 (0.93 to 0.99)0.0051.04 (1.00 to 1.08)0.033
Leg pain¶0.71 (0.59 to 0.86)0.0010.90 (0.70 to 1.16)0.408
No of pain sites‡0.83 (0.75 to 0.91)<0.0010.92 (0.81 to 1.03)0.147
Duration of episode0.97 (0.95 to 0.99)0.0300.97 (0.94 to 1.0)0.033
Clinical red flags (not included in model)
No of positive red flags0.95 (0.91 to 1.00)0.048

*Pain intensity scale: 1=none, 2=very mild, 3=mild, 4=moderate, 5=severe, 6=very severe.

†Disability scale: 1=not at all, 2=little bit, 3=moderate, 4=quite a bit, 5=extreme.

§Rated on scale from 0-10, with higher score indicating better ability to control pain.

¶Rated on scales from 0-10, with higher scores indicating more tension and anxiety, more feelings of depression, or higher risk of persistent pain.

‡One point for each pain site: neck, shoulder, upper back, lower back, and leg.

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