Table 2

Subjective factors for chronic low back resulting from clinical lumbar spine instability.

Consultation Considerations
Neuropathic origin
  • Does the pain present in a dermatomal pattern?

  • Is the pain unilateral leg pain?

  • Is the leg pain greater than the low back pain?

  • Are there sensory disturbances, such as allodynia or paresthesia?

  • Is there a lower limb motor disturbance?

  • Is there a positive Lasègue’s sign or straight leg raise?

Mechanical origin
  • Does your back giving way or giving out cause feelings of instability?

  • Do you need to frequently crack or pop the back to reduce symptoms?

  • Do you experience painful catching or locking during trunk motions?

  • Do you experience pain during transitional activities (sit to stand, etc)?

  • Does returning to an erect position from flexion cause greater pain?

  • Do you find it more difficult to sit unsupported than with a backrest?

  • Do sudden, trivial, or mild movements such as brushing teeth or low load task while flexed cause pain?

  • Is pain worse with sustained postures (driving, extended standing, etc)?

  • Are you fearful of moving?