Prevalence and physical-mental comorbidity of chronic back and neck pain in Spain: Results from the ESEMeD Study

Alejandra Pinto-Meza, Antoni Serrano-Blanco, Miquel Codony, Blanca Reneses, Michael Von Korff, Josep Maria Haro, Jordi Alonso

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    19 Citations (Scopus)


    BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: Chronic back pain (CBP) and chronic neck pain (CNP) are highly prevalent among the adult population. However, less is known about its comorbidity with other diseases and its impact on global functioning. The objectives of following study, that is part of the ESEMeD-Spain study, are to estimate CBP-CNP prevalence among Spanish population, its comorbidity with other physical and mental conditions, and its impact on global functioning. SUBJECTS AND METHOD: Cross-sectional household survey of a representative sample of the population of Spain 18 years or older. Sample size was 5,473 individuals. CBP-CNP and comorbid conditions were ascertained by self-report. Mental disorders were ascertained with the Composite International Diagnostic Interview and global functioning with the WHO Dissability Assessment Schedule. Response rate was 78.6%. RESULTS: The one year prevalence of chronic CBP-CNP was 14.7%. A 65.7% of people with CBP-CNP reported at least one other comorbid condition, including other chronic pain conditions (49.4%), chronic physical conditions (40.7%), any mood disorders (7.9%), panic disorder (1.3%), posttraumatic stress disorder (1.5%) or generalized anxiety disorder (1.4%). Additionally, CBP-CNP negatively affected global functioning. However, comorbid conditions explained about one-third of the association between CBP-CNP and global functioning. CONCLUSIONS: CBP-CNP is highly prevalent and comorbid with other physical and mental conditions. Comorbidity negatively affects individuals global functioning.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)325-330
    JournalMedicina Clinica
    Publication statusPublished - 9 Sep 2006


    • Back pain
    • Comorbidity
    • Epidemiology
    • Global functioning
    • Neck pain
    • Prevalence


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