Moffatt, Kate and Roberts, Lisa
A study to establish 16 year old students' views of an ergonomic schoolbag
Talkback, Autumn, .
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Low back pain has been called a 20th century enigma 1 which continues to cause disability and distress in a large proportion of the adult population. Within the last decade, it has been recognised that adolescents increasingly report back discomfort
In a cross-sectional postal study, amongst a Danish population of 29,424 twins, born between 1953 and 1982, Leboeuf-Yde and Kyvik report a rapid increase in back pain prevalence after the age of 12 years 2. By the age of 18 years (girls) and 20 years (boys), more than 50% of the study population reported experiencing at least one back pain episode. A five year, longitudinal survey, with 216 British eleven-year-olds, showed the prevalence of back pain rising by about 10% per year, from 11.6% at age 11 + to 50.4% at 15+ years 3.
Despite these significant increases with age, a link between childhood and adult back pain remains highly controversial. Although adolescent back pain does appear to increase with age, in general it is not reported to deteriorate with time 3. Many episodes in the young are readily forgotten and treatment is not usually required. Indeed, Burton et al. conclude that much of the symptomatology may be considered a normal life experience 3.
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