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Altered somatosensory profile according to quantitative sensory testing in patients with degenerative lumbar spine disorders scheduled for surgery
Linköping University, Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Division of Physiotherapy. Linköping University, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences. Region Östergötland, Local Health Care Services in Central Östergötland, Primary Health Care in Central County.
Linköping University, Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, Division of Surgery, Orthopedics and Oncology. Linköping University, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences. Region Östergötland, Center for Surgery, Orthopaedics and Cancer Treatment, Department of Spinal Surgery.
Linköping University, Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Division of Physiotherapy. Linköping University, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences. Region Östergötland, Local Health Care Services in West Östergötland, Research & Development Unit in Local Health Care.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3707-5869
Linköping University, Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Division of Community Medicine. Linköping University, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences. Region Östergötland, Anaesthetics, Operations and Specialty Surgery Center, Pain and Rehabilitation Center.
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2017 (English)In: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders, ISSN 1471-2474, E-ISSN 1471-2474, Vol. 18, article id 264Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: Somatosensory profiling in affected and non-affected body regions can strengthen our insight regarding the underlying pain mechanisms, which can be valuable in treatment decision making and to improve outcomes, in patients with degenerative lumbar spine disorders pre-surgery. The aim was to describe somatosensory profiles in patients with degenerative lumbar spine disorders, to identify the proportion with altered somatosensory profile, and to analyze demographic characteristics, self-reported function, pain, and health pre- and 3 months post-surgery. Methods: In this prospective cohort study in a Spine Clinic, 105 patients scheduled for surgery for spinal stenosis, disc herniation, degenerative disc disease, or spondylolisthesis were consecutively recruited. Exclusion criteria were; indication for acute surgery or previous surgery at the same spinal level or severe grade of pathology. Quantitative sensory testing (QST) and self-reported function, pain, and health was measured pre- and 3 months post-surgery. The somatosensory profile included cold detection threshold, warmth detection threshold, cold pain threshold, heat pain threshold and pressure pain threshold in affected and non-affected body regions. Results: On a group level, the patients somatosensory profiles were within the 95% confidence interval (CI) from normative reference data means. On an individual level, an altered somatosensory profile was defined as having two or more body regions (including a non-affected region) with QST values outside of normal ranges for reference data. The 23 patients (22%) with altered somatosensory profiles, with mostly loss of function, were older (P = 0.031), more often female (P = 0.005), had higher back and leg pain (P = 0.016, 0.020), lower mental health component summary score (SF 36 MCS) (P = 0.004) and larger pain distribution (P = 0.047), compared to others in the cohort. Post-surgery there was a tendency to worse pain, function and health in the group with altered somatosensory profile pre-surgery. Conclusions: On a group level, patients with degenerative lumbar spine disorders scheduled for surgery were within normal range for the QST measurements compared to reference values. On an individual level, an altered somatosensory profile outside of normal range in both affected and non-affected body regions occurred in 22% of patients, which may indicate disturbed somatosensory function. Those patients had mostly loss of sensory function and had worse self-reported outcome pre-surgery, compared to the rest of the cohort. Future prospective studies are needed to further examine whether these dimensions can be useful in predicting post-surgery outcome and guide need of additional treatments.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
BIOMED CENTRAL LTD , 2017. Vol. 18, article id 264
Keywords [en]
Disc herniation; Spinal stenosis; Spondylolisthesis; Degenerative disc disease; Spine surgery; Quantitative sensory testing; Outcome
National Category
Physiotherapy
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-139285DOI: 10.1186/s12891-017-1581-6ISI: 000403494900001PubMedID: 28623897OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-139285DiVA, id: diva2:1120972
Note

Funding Agencies|Swedish Research Council [521-2019-3578]; Faculty of Medicine and Health, Linkoping University; County Council of Ostergotland, Linkoping, Sweden

Available from: 2017-07-07 Created: 2017-07-07 Last updated: 2018-08-28
In thesis
1. Pre-surgery physiotherapy and pain thresholds in patients with degenerative lumbar spine disorders
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Pre-surgery physiotherapy and pain thresholds in patients with degenerative lumbar spine disorders
2018 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Background: Patients scheduled for spinal surgery often experience long duration of pain, which may influence the pain-regulation system, function and health and have an impact on post-surgery outcome. Prehabilitation potentially augments functional capacity before surgery, which may have beneficial effects after surgery.

Aim: The overall aim of the thesis is to study pre-surgery physiotherapy and somatosensory function in patients with degenerative lumbar spine disorders and to explore the patients’ experiences of pre-surgery physiotherapy.

Methods: Somatosensory function was measured with quantitative sensory testing (QST). Pre-surgery physiotherapy was evaluated with patient-reported outcome measures (n = 197). Patients’ experiences of how symptoms are explained and their experiences of the influences on back-related health after pre-surgery physiotherapy were explored.

Results: Half of the patients reported back or leg pain for more than 2 years. On a group level, the somatosensory profiles were within the reference range. On an individual level, an altered somatosensory profile was found in 23/105 patients, these were older, more often women, and reported higher pain, larger pain distribution and worse SF-36 MCS (mental health component summary). Patients with disc herniation, more sensitive to pressure pain in the hand presurgery, was associated with poorer function, self-efficacy, anxiety and depression score pre-surgery, worse function, self-efficacy and leg pain 3 months post-surgery and worse health related quality of life, self-efficacy, depression score 1 year postsurgery. The results for sensitivity for cold pain were similar, except that it even was associated with poorer function and pain 1 year post-surgery. The pre-surgery physiotherapy group had less back pain, better function, health, self-efficacy, fear avoidance score, depression score and physical activity level than the waiting-list group after the pre-surgery intervention. The effects were small. Both groups improved significantly after surgery, with no differences between groups, except that the higher physical activity level in the physiotherapy group remained at the 1-year follow-up. Only 58% of the patients reported a minimum of one visit for rehabilitation during the 1 year preceding the decision to undergo surgery. Patients experienced that pre-surgery physiotherapy had influenced symptoms, physical function, coping, well-being and social functioning to various degrees. Pre-surgery physiotherapy was experienced as a tool for reassurance and an opportunity to reflect about treatment and lifestyle. The patients mainly used biomedical explanatory models based on image reports to explain their backrelated symptoms. Both broader and more narrow, as well as lack of explanations of symptoms emerged. Further, wanting and sometimes struggling to be wellinformed about symptoms and interventions were described.

Conclusions: Being more sensitive to pressure- and cold pain in the hand, as a sign of widespread pain pre-surgery, was associated with poorer function, pain and health at post-surgery in patients with disc herniation. Pre-surgery physiotherapy decreased pain, fear avoidance, improved health related quality of life; and it decreased the risk of a worsening in psychological well-being before surgery. The improvements were small, and improvements after surgery were similar for both groups. At the 1-year follow-up, the physiotherapy group still had a higher activity level than the waiting list group. The pre-surgery physiotherapy was well tolerated. Patients’ reported experiences also illustrates the influence on function, pain and health. Patients experienced that pre-surgery physiotherapy provided reassurance and gave time to reflect on treatments and lifestyle. Symptoms were mainly described in line with a biomedical explanatory model. Those using a broader explanation were confident that physiotherapy and self-management could influence their back-related symptoms.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2018. p. 86
Series
Linköping University Medical Dissertations, ISSN 0345-0082 ; 1629
National Category
Physiotherapy
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-150553 (URN)10.3384/diss.diva-150553 (DOI)9789176852767 (ISBN)
Public defence
2018-09-21, Berzeliussalen, Campus US, Linköping, 09:00 (Swedish)
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Supervisors
Available from: 2018-08-27 Created: 2018-08-27 Last updated: 2018-08-28Bibliographically approved

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Lindbäck, YvonneTropp, HansEnthoven, PaulGerdle, BjörnAbbott, AllanÖberg, Birgitta
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Division of PhysiotherapyFaculty of Medicine and Health SciencesPrimary Health Care in Central CountyDivision of Surgery, Orthopedics and OncologyDepartment of Spinal SurgeryResearch & Development Unit in Local Health CareDivision of Community MedicinePain and Rehabilitation Center
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