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Back Pain Stats

Low back pain (LBP) affects at least 80% of us some time in our lives, perhaps 20-30% of us at any given time. It is usually recurrent, and subsequent episodes tend to increase in severity. It is common in individuals who lead sedentary lives and in those who engage in manual labor. It can occur at any age but is most prevalent during the third to sixth decades of life.


A team of Duke Medical Center researchers has found that patients suffering from back pain consume more than $90 billion annually in health-care expenses, with approximately $26 billion of that amount directly attributable to treating the back pain. Tremendous costs are associated with LBP, including lost productivity and income from work, the expense of medical, rehabilitation, and surgical interventions, and the costs of disabling pain and limited daily function.

Back pain is second only to upper respiratory conditions as the stated cause of work loss. The costs for treatment and compensation for LBP in industry may be greater than the total amount spent on all other industrial injuries combined. However, most of the costs, perhaps 80%, are incurred by about 20% of the LBP patients who then become disabled.


A common misconception often cited is that 90% of back pain will go away on its own without treatment. However, a recent review published in the European Spine Journal in 2003, showed that the reported proportion of patients who still experienced pain after 12 months was 62% (range, 42-75%), dispelling the popular notion that up to 90% of low back pain episodes resolve spontaneously within 1 month.

There is also a large number of Americans who, after trying many standard treatments, are still left suffering with serious back pain. If you, your friends, or your family members have been told you have to learn to live with the pain, or if you have tried exercises, drugs, and/or shots, and you are still suffering, and are now being told you need surgery, then this therapy may be just what you are looking for. Please go to the “find a physician” link and schedule a complimentary consultation with an approved doctor. Another option is to fill out the “Web Physician Consultation” to see if you are a good candidate for decompression therapy first; then you may schedule a consultation with an approved member doctor.

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