WHO Releases New Guideline for Chronic Low Back Pain Management


In a recent groundbreaking development, the World Health Organization (WHO) has published a new guideline aimed at the non-surgical treatment of chronic primary low back pain in adults. This comprehensive guideline reviews 37 interventions, including spinal manipulative therapy (SMT), which received a Conditional recommendation in favour of use, very low certainty evidence. While this may appear modest at first glance, within the full context of the guideline, it marks a notable recognition of SMT’s potential role in managing this pervasive condition.

Dr David Cahill, President of the ACA, welcomed this announcement as a significant step forward in terms of recognition. “Although SMT does not equate to chiropractic care, this acknowledgment from the WHO as to its value is a testament to the diligent efforts of chiropractic researchers over many years,” Dr Cahill noted.

Further enriching the conversation, ACA Board Member, Dr Anthony Coxon has collaborated with Dr Lyndon Amorin-Woods on a podcast, diving deeper into these guidelines. Their discussion brings additional insight, helping chiropractic professionals understand how these guidelines can be leveraged to enhance their practice and patient care. To listen to the podcast in full visit www.chiro.org.au/episode-108-who-chronic-primary-low-back-pain-guideline/

For those interested in exploring the guideline in detail, it is available chiropractors.org.au/wp-content/uploads/WHO-guidelines.pdf  Additionally, the World Federation of Chiropractic (WFC)’s reaction to these new guidelines can be found at chiropractors.org.au/wp-content/uploads/WFC_WHO_Guidelines_response.pdf providing further industry perspective on this significant development.

This guideline’s release by WHO is a pivotal moment for the chiropractic profession, underscoring the value of SMT in managing chronic low back pain and reinforcing the profession’s role in promoting patient health and wellbeing.