MyBackPain - Evaluation of an innovative consumer-focused website for low back pain: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial

Leanne M. Hall, Manuela Ferreira, Jenny Setchell, Simon French, Jessica Kasza, Kim L. Bennell, David Hunter, Bill Vicenzino, Chris Dickson, Paul Hodges*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Introduction: Despite the prevalence of low back pain (LBP) worldwide, many people with the condition do not receive evidence-based care or achieve the best possible outcomes. There is a gap in the dissemination of evidence-based information across the globe. The advent of the internet has changed the way people obtain health information. As such, trustworthy, tailored and validated LBP resources may help bridge the gap. This study aims to measure the effectiveness of a new website (MyBackPain) in improving spinal health literacy, treatment preferences and clinical outcomes for people with LBP, in comparison with other online resources. Methods and analysis: This online, pragmatic, randomised controlled trial will comprise 440 people with non-specific LBP of any duration. In addition to access to publicly available online information (control group), the intervention group will be given access to the website. Participants and research staff, including the biostatistician, will be blinded to treatment allocation. Data will be collected at baseline, 1, 3 (primary end-point), 6 and 12 months via online surveys and questionnaires. The primary outcome is spinal health literacy. Secondary outcomes include quality of treatment preferences (stated and observed) and LBP clinical outcomes (pain, disability and quality of life). Analyses will be by intention-to-treat and include outcome data on all randomised participants. Descriptive statistics will be presented for demographic and clinical characteristics. Ethics and dissemination: This trial has been prospectively registered with the Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry and has ethical approval from the University of Queensland Human Research Ethics Committee (2017000995). Trial outcomes will be shared via national and international conference presentations and peer-reviewed journal publications. Trial registration number: ACTRN12617001292369; Pre-results.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere027516
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalBMJ Open
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 14 May 2019

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Author(s) 2019. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


  • health literacy
  • internet resources
  • low back pain

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