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Back pain

About the author: 

Suddenly you get a twinge (or worse) in your back

Suddenly you get a twinge (or worse) in your back. So you go to see a physiotherapist, who recommends a course of treatment. After six or so visits, you'll be right as rain, he tells you.
But new research reckons you're just wasting your money. Whatever good a physiotherapist can do will be achieved in the very first visit - and that's likely to be the simple advice to stay active.
Researchers from Warwick University assessed the progress of 286 patients with low back pain that had lasted longer than six weeks. Those who paid routine visits to the physiotherapist fared no better than the rest who heeded the advice to lead an active life.
So, if the researchers are right, it seems that the manipulation skills of the physiotherapist - a group that each year treats around 1.3 million people in the UK on the National Health Service - do nothing to benefit the patient.


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