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Exploring patients’ experiences of internet-based self-management support for low back pain in primary care

Exploring patients’ experiences of internet-based self-management support for low back pain in primary care
Exploring patients’ experiences of internet-based self-management support for low back pain in primary care
Objective: We explored patients’ experiences of using internet-based self-management support for low back pain (LBP) in primary care, with and without physiotherapist telephone guidance.

Design: Exploratory descriptive qualitative study using thematic analysis, nested within a randomised feasibility trial.

Methods: Patients with LBP who participated in a feasibility trial of the ‘SupportBack’ internet intervention (ISRCTN:31034004) were invited to take part in semi-structured telephone interviews after the 3-month intervention period (a convenience sample from within the trial population). Fifteen participants took part (age range: 36-87, 66.7% female, characteristics representative of the trial population). Data were analysed thematically.

Results: Analysis resulted in the development of six themes (subthemes in parentheses): Perceptions of SupportBack’s design (Clarity and ease of use; Variety and range of information provided; Need for specificity and flexibility); Engaging with the SupportBack intervention; Promoting positive thought processes (Reassurance; awareness of self-management); Managing behaviour with SupportBack (Motivation and goal setting; Using activity as a pain management strategy; Preferences for walking or gentle back exercises); Feeling supported by telephone physiotherapists (Provision of reassurances and clarity; Physiotherapists are motivating); Severity and comorbidity as barriers (Pre-existing condition or severity acting as a barrier; Less useful for mild low back pain).

Conclusions: The internet intervention SupportBack appeared to feasibly support self-management of LBP. Reassurance and on-going support to implement behavioural changes were central to reported benefits. The addition of physiotherapist telephone support further enhanced patient experience and the potential utility of the intervention.
1526-2375
1806-1817
Geraghty, Adam
2c6549fe-9868-4806-b65a-21881c1930af
Roberts, Lisa
0a937943-5246-4877-bd6b-4dcd172b5cd0
Stanford, Rosie
0715bcfe-454a-4caa-a1d8-6973a5576017
Hill, Jonathan
a52ad297-562c-461d-a727-b46daf757daa
Yoganantham, Dinesh
aa0e04e6-dab4-4066-b1a4-335ae7eacb35
Little, Paul
1bf2d1f7-200c-47a5-ab16-fe5a8756a777
Foster, Nadine E.
2ca79c15-6ada-4b99-982c-f8abee19e628
Hay, Elaine
9fdd04be-2a91-4b9c-8524-37a6111fdf9c
Yardley, Lucy
64be42c4-511d-484d-abaa-f8813452a22e
Geraghty, Adam
2c6549fe-9868-4806-b65a-21881c1930af
Roberts, Lisa
0a937943-5246-4877-bd6b-4dcd172b5cd0
Stanford, Rosie
0715bcfe-454a-4caa-a1d8-6973a5576017
Hill, Jonathan
a52ad297-562c-461d-a727-b46daf757daa
Yoganantham, Dinesh
aa0e04e6-dab4-4066-b1a4-335ae7eacb35
Little, Paul
1bf2d1f7-200c-47a5-ab16-fe5a8756a777
Foster, Nadine E.
2ca79c15-6ada-4b99-982c-f8abee19e628
Hay, Elaine
9fdd04be-2a91-4b9c-8524-37a6111fdf9c
Yardley, Lucy
64be42c4-511d-484d-abaa-f8813452a22e

Geraghty, Adam, Roberts, Lisa, Stanford, Rosie, Hill, Jonathan, Yoganantham, Dinesh, Little, Paul, Foster, Nadine E., Hay, Elaine and Yardley, Lucy (2019) Exploring patients’ experiences of internet-based self-management support for low back pain in primary care. Pain Medicine, 21 (9), 1806-1817. (doi:10.1093/pm/pnz312).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Objective: We explored patients’ experiences of using internet-based self-management support for low back pain (LBP) in primary care, with and without physiotherapist telephone guidance.

Design: Exploratory descriptive qualitative study using thematic analysis, nested within a randomised feasibility trial.

Methods: Patients with LBP who participated in a feasibility trial of the ‘SupportBack’ internet intervention (ISRCTN:31034004) were invited to take part in semi-structured telephone interviews after the 3-month intervention period (a convenience sample from within the trial population). Fifteen participants took part (age range: 36-87, 66.7% female, characteristics representative of the trial population). Data were analysed thematically.

Results: Analysis resulted in the development of six themes (subthemes in parentheses): Perceptions of SupportBack’s design (Clarity and ease of use; Variety and range of information provided; Need for specificity and flexibility); Engaging with the SupportBack intervention; Promoting positive thought processes (Reassurance; awareness of self-management); Managing behaviour with SupportBack (Motivation and goal setting; Using activity as a pain management strategy; Preferences for walking or gentle back exercises); Feeling supported by telephone physiotherapists (Provision of reassurances and clarity; Physiotherapists are motivating); Severity and comorbidity as barriers (Pre-existing condition or severity acting as a barrier; Less useful for mild low back pain).

Conclusions: The internet intervention SupportBack appeared to feasibly support self-management of LBP. Reassurance and on-going support to implement behavioural changes were central to reported benefits. The addition of physiotherapist telephone support further enhanced patient experience and the potential utility of the intervention.

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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 22 October 2019
e-pub ahead of print date: 16 December 2019

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 435751
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/435751
ISSN: 1526-2375
PURE UUID: a509d4a7-e43e-48ec-93f0-d34832f97285
ORCID for Lucy Yardley: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-3853-883X

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Date deposited: 19 Nov 2019 17:30
Last modified: 15 Jan 2021 05:01

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