In this post we take a quick look at the estimated burden of back pain on Australian society.
It describes a range of conditions that affect the bones, joints, connective tissue, muscles and nerves of the back. (1). Back pain affects 3.7 million Australians and up to 90% of the population will suffer from some form of back pain at one point in their lives (2). As our populace ages, the prevalence is expected to increase (3).
In addition to physical symptoms, pain also has economic implications. Back pain creates 3.6% of the disease burden in Australia and the direct & indirect cost of back pain is estimated to be $25bn per annum (4; 5). In 2010 alone, more than 100 million years of productive life were lost to back pain or osteoarthritis-related disabilities (5).
People with back problems are more than twice as likely to report very high levels of psychological distress and 30-40% of Australians seeking treatment for chronic pain have major depression (7; 8).
Whilst one modality of many that can help, cold laser therapy is non-invasive and non-drug. It’s ability to directly stimulate healing at the cellular level and manage pain on a sustained basis sets it apart from treatments (like medication) that often just manage symptoms. Dr. Roberta Chow PhD is Quantum Pain Management’s principal doctor and has led the field in low level laser therapy for over 30 years. She has used cold laser in her treatment of pain since 1988 and in 2010 her ground breaking work on neck pain was published in the world’s most prestigious medical journal. We see patients with a wide range of back conditions and patients can often begin to see improvement within 1-4 treatments.