A recent report from the World Health Organisation (WHO) is certainly a step in the right direction towards recognising holistic therapies as the way to treat lower back pain, instead of medication.

The report provides evidence-informed recommendations on non-surgical interventions for chronic primary lower back pain (CPLBP), to improve CPLBP-related health and wellbeing outcomes.

Recommendations made in the Guideline include spinal manipulation as one of the physical therapies recommended for use in all patients, as well as physical therapies such as, dry needling, a structured exercise program and massage. All of which we offer at Newland chiropractic and neurology centre.

The report was also scathing of most forms of commonly used pharmacological interventions, with only non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory medication receiving a conditional recommendation.

Opioids, benzodiazepines, antidepressants, anticonvulsants, muscle relaxants, cannabis-related preparations and paracetamol (acetaminophen) all received the thumbs-down, with explicit guideline advice not to use or recommend.

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The purpose of the guideline is to provide evidence-based recommendations on nonsurgical interventions for chronic primary LBP (CPLBP) in adults, including older people, that can be delivered in primary and community care settings to improve CPLBP-related health and well-being outcomes.

We hope that this new report, available to medical doctors, nurses, allied health workers including chiropractors, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, pharmacists, psychologists and community health workers, as well as public health programme and system managers, will provide the medical profession with evidence that lower back pain should be treated with manual therapy and an exercise plan, delivered by qualified practitioners such as chiropractors.