Research Project: Goal Oriented Activity for Latinos with Spine Pain (GOALS/Metas)

Spine pain is common, including among racial/ethnic minorities.1,2 It has led to $100 billion in reduced productivity and lost wages.3 Spine pain also reduces quality of life for people who have it and their families.4,5 Hispanics/Latinos report more frequent and severe episodes of work-related pain than Caucasians,6 yet most existing treatments for chronic spine pain have been developed and tested in Caucasian populations.

Co-led by Dr. Sara Gombatto and Dr. Katrina Maluf, the goal of this research project is to develop an effective tele-rehabilitation approach to help with pain management. The project team is adapting a cognitive behavioral physical therapy intervention, a physical therapy program that involves changing thoughts and behaviors, to help Hispanics/Latinos who have chronic spine pain. This type of intervention is designed to help individuals manage their pain through goal setting, practicing balanced thinking, engaging in rest and activity, and managing setbacks. The adapted intervention consists of in-person visits and telephone calls with a physical therapist and a targeted home exercise program. Materials are available in English and Spanish.

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1 Plesh O, Adams SH, Gansky SA. Racial/Ethnic and gender prevalences in reported common pains in a national sample. J Orofac Pain. 2011;25(1):25-31.

2 Zettel-Watson L, Rutledge DN, Aquino JK, et al. Typology of chronic pain among overweight Mexican Americans. J Health Care Poor Underserved. 2011;22(3):1030-1047.

3 Katz JN. Lumbar disc disorders and low-back pain: socioeconomic factors and consequences. J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2006;88 Suppl 2:21-24.

4Hoy D, Brooks P, Blyth F, Buchbinder R. The Epidemiology of low back pain. Best Pract Res Clin Rheumatol. 2010;24(6):769-781.

5 van Randeraad-van der Zee CH, Beurskens AJ, Swinkels RA, et al. The burden of neck pain: its meaning for persons with neck pain and healthcare providers, explored by concept mapping. Quality of life research : an international journal of quality of life aspects of treatment, care and rehabilitation. 2016;25(5):1219-1225.

6 Anderson JT, Hunting KL, Welch LS. Injury and employment patterns among Hispanic construction workers. J Occup Environ Med. 2000;42(2):176-186.

Research reported on this website was supported by the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities, part of the National Institutes of Health, under Award Number U54MD012397; additional support is provided by S21MD010690 (SDSU HealthLINK Endowment). The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.