|Edited by David G. Fairchild, MD, MPH
The American College of Physicians now recommends nonpharmacologic therapies — including superficial heat, massage, acupuncture, and spinal manipulation — as first-line treatment for patients with acute or subacute low back pain (lasting 12 weeks or less). The new guideline, published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, is a major change from the group’s 2007 guidance.
The ACP emphasizes that most low back pain is self-limited, with many patients showing considerable improvement within the first 4 weeks.
Among the group’s other recommendations: