Low back pain and sciatica in over 16s: assessment and management

National Institute for Health and Care Excellence


Low back pain is responsible for more disability than any other condition worldwide; 60–80% of people in the UK report back pain at some point in their lives. Primary care management involves non-invasive treatment, encouraging self-management and exercise supported by analgesia where necessary. The proportion of cases that require specialist referral is small, but identifying when the cause of pain is a more serious condition can be a significant challenge for primary care.

This updated Guidelines summary covers the diagnosis and methods of non-invasive management of low back pain and sciatica in people over 16 years of age.


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