Diagnostic Accuracy of Gluteal Trigger Points to Differentiate Radicular from Non-Radicular Low Back Pain
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With nearly 80% of people experiencing low back pain (LBP) throughout their lives, and a one-month prevalence of 37%, LBP is a common and costly cause of pain and disability! LBP may be caused by numerous aetiologies, and a clinical diagnosis is important to devising an appropriate patient management strategy. Broadly, it has been recommended that LBP be placed into one of three categories: 1) mechanical pain; 2) LBP with radiculopathy (caused by nerve root irritation); or 3) LBP associated with specific cause or pathology. Categorical diagnoses will assist clinicians in selecting interventions and should be reached after a careful history and physical examination consisting of valid and reliable clinical tests. One of the challenges in distinguishing between mechanical pain and radiculopathy is the potential for active trigger points (TrP) to cause segmental sensitization, which may mimic radicular pain symptoms. It is important to note that TrPs may also result from irritated nerves, causing hyperactivity in corresponding myotomes and thus it is possible that radicular pain due to a disc herniation could also result in the occurrence of TrP. The aim of this study (published in the Clinical Journal of Pain in 2016) was to evaluate whether the presence of gluteal TrPs could help to differentiate between radicular and non-radicular LBP.…LOG IN OR SUBSCRIBE TO ACCESS THE COMPLETE RESEARCH REVIEW!