Low back pain prevalence in Sao Paulo, Brazil: A cross-sectional study
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Background: Low back pain (LBP) is the leading cause of disability worldwide, and the burden of LBP is expected to increase in coming decades, particularly in middle-income countries. There is a lack of large and high-quality studies investigating the prevalence of LBP in Brazil. Objective: To estimate the point, one-year, and lifetime prevalence of non-specific LBP in adults from the city of São Paulo, Brazil. Methods: This community-based, cross-sectional study recruited 3000 participants in flow point locations randomly selected from census sectors of São Paulo. Interviews and self-administered questionnaires were used to estimate point prevalence, one-year prevalence, and lifetime prevalence of LBP. Results: The estimate of point prevalence was 9.8% (95% CI: 8.8, 11.0), one-year prevalence was 48.1% (95% CI: 46.3, 49.9), and lifetime prevalence was 62.6% (95% CI: 60.8, 64.3). One-year and lifetime prevalence were higher in females, obese people, people insufficiently active and sedentary, current smokers, people who are exposed to repetitive movements, crouched or kneeling position, people dissatisfied with their job, people a little bit or very stressed, a little bit or very anxious, and a little bit depressed, and people with good and fair or poor general health. Lifetime prevalence was also higher in people exposed to standing positions and exposure to carrying weight. Conclusions: The high point, one-year, and lifetime prevalence of LBP in Brazil indicates that there is a need for coordinated efforts from government, the private sector, universities, health workers, and civil society to deliver appropriate management of LBP in middle-income countries.