Severe chronic low back pain: patient journey from onset of symptoms to strong opioid treatments in Europe.

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Aim: We report the first patient roadmap in severe chronic low back pain (cLBP) in Europe, assessing the views of cLBP patients and general practitioners (GPs) who treat cLBP with regard to current cLBP management. Methodology: Patient journey mapping was conducted in four European countries to assess the views of cLBP patients (n = 20) and GPs (n = 40). Results: Four broad phases of cLBP, subdivided into eight individual steps, were identified as part of the patient journey, showing a disconnect between patients’ and physicians’ treatment goals, and expectations regarding pain relief levels for some patients. Conclusion: Improved communication, with greater involvement of patients in multimodal management decisions, might benefit the GP-patient relationship and overall outcomes for cLBP patients.

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Authors: Bart Morlion, Gabriele Finco, Dominic Aldington, Michael Überall, Ravi Karra