Low-back pain

Low-back pain is a common disorder involving the muscles, nerves and bones of the back. Pain can vary from a dull constant ache to a sudden sharp feeling. Low-back pain is usually classified by duration as acute (pain lasting less than six weeks), sub-chronic (six to 12 weeks) or chronic (more than 12 weeks). IWH research looks at the occupational risk factors for back pain, how to treat and manage it, and prognostic factors related to recovery and return to work.

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A man sitting on a couch holds his shoulder in pain
At Work article

IWH study finds 7 in 10 injured workers still experience pain more than a year after injury

A high proportion of injured workers in Ontario experience persistent pain for well over a year after their work-related injury. According to an IWH study of workers' compensation lost-time claimants, 70 per cent of workers experience pain 18 months after their work injury.
Published: September 30, 2022
IWH Speaker Series
IWH Speaker Series

Persistent pain: its role in work absence, health, and employment after a disabling work-related injury

Among working-aged adults, one of every six injuries that need medical attention are caused by work exposures, with over a third of these injuries leading to periods of work absence or disability. Chronic or persistent pain may occur after an injury. It is currently unclear how many workers experience persistent pain and how it impacts worker health and function, return to work and disability benefit expenditures. In this presentation, Dr. Kathleen Dobson shares findings from a study of Ontario workers experiencing a work-related injury or illness focusing on the prevalence of persistent pain, and its association with return-to-work outcomes.
Published: November 2022
NSC Safety + Health
IWH in the media

Study finds long-term pain an issue for many injured workers

A recent study of injured workers in Ontario “reinforces the importance of modified duties (if necessary) and return-to-work planning,” researcher say after results showed 70% experienced persistent pain 18 months after being injured.
Published: Safety+Health, November 2022
Canadian HR Reporter logo
IWH in the media

7 in 10 injured workers still experience pain 18 months later

Seven in 10 workers who were injured on the job in Ontario still experience pain 18 months after the incident, Jim Wilson reports on findings from an IWH study.
Published: Canadian HR Reporter, November 2022
Journal article
Journal article

Yoga for chronic non-specific low back pain

Published: Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, November 2022
A man sitting on a couch holds his shoulder in pain
At Work article

IWH study finds 7 in 10 injured workers still experience pain more than a year after injury

A high proportion of injured workers in Ontario experience persistent pain for well over a year after their work-related injury. According to an IWH study of workers' compensation lost-time claimants, 70 per cent of workers experience pain 18 months after their work injury.
Published: September 2022
IWH in the media
IWH in the media

Rethinking Pain - A CRAM Ideas Podcast episode

Why do we feel pain long after an injury has healed? Do I feel pain differently than you? How does culture affect our perception of pain? And what’s the most effective way to treat the pain that doesn’t stop? CRAM Ideas host Mary Ito speaks with Dr. Andrea Furlan, a leading expert on pain.
Published: March 2022
Journal article
Journal article
Journal article

Acupuncture for chronic nonspecific low back pain

Published: Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, December 2020
Journal article