This article was published in the journal BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders in June 2019 by Protheroe et al. Study authors conducted multidisciplinary consensus group meetings with 20 practitioners to develop recommendations for best practices for patients identified at low, medium and high risk based upon the 9-item STarT Back MSK Tool (Link). This publication is important because STarT Back may be a useful tool in the virtual evaluation of patients, as well as in identifying potential treatments that can be delivered via telehealth.Relevant to this late point, in this study education and advice was found to be appropriate for patients in all three risk categories, and self-management and local exercise resources was recommended for low risk patients. Personalized exercise, psychosocial interventions and workplace assessment was recommended for patients at medium risk.

Take home message – A study published last year in Chiropractic and Manual Therapies (Article) found that 95% of patients with low back pain presenting for care at outpatient teaching clinics at Palmer College fell in the low (79%) and medium risk (16%) categories. It is likely that many patients seeking care from a doctor of chiropractic can be helped by telehealth and other virtual treatment tools during the    Covid-19 crisis and beyond. 

Open Access: Follow the link and click on the PDF button to the left of the article title to get free access to the full article.  Article

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