Cover: Predictors of Pain Management Strategies in Adults with Low-Back Pain

Predictors of Pain Management Strategies in Adults with Low-Back Pain

A Secondary Analysis of Amazon Mechanical Turk Survey Data

Published in: Journal of Integrative and Complementary Medicine, Volume 30, Number 3 (March 2024), Pages207-312. doi: 10.1089/jicm.2023.0233

Posted on Apr 12, 2024

by Brian R. Anderson, Patricia M. Herman, Ron D. Hays


To evaluate the associations between baseline demographics, health conditions, pain management strategies, and health-related quality-of-life (HRQoL) measures with pain management strategies at 3-month follow-up in respondents reporting current low-back pain (LBP).

Study Design

Cohort study of survey data collected from adults with LBP sampled from Amazon Mechanical Turk crowdsourcing panel.


Demographics, health conditions, and the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS)-10 were included in the baseline survey. Respondents reporting LBP completed a more comprehensive survey inquiring about pain management strategies and several HRQoL measures. Bivariate then multivariate logistic regression estimated odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for the association between baseline characteristics and pain management utilization at 3-month follow-up. Model fit statistics were evaluated to assess the predictive value.


The final cohort included 717 respondents with completed surveys. The most prevalent pain management strategy at follow-up was other care (n = 474), followed by no care (n = 94), conservative care only (n = 76), medical care only (n = 51), and medical and conservative care combined (n = 22). The conservative care only group had higher (better) mental and physical health PROMIS-10 scores as opposed to the medical care only and combination care groups, which had lower (worse) physical health scores. In multivariate models, estimated ORs (95% CIs) for the association between baseline and follow-up pain management ranged from 4.6 (2.7?7.8) for conservative care only to 16.8 (6.9?40.7) for medical care only. Additional significant baseline predictors included age, income, education, workman's compensation claim, Oswestry Disability Index score, and Global Chronic Pain Scale grade.


This study provides important information regarding the association between patient characteristics, HRQoL measures, and LBP-related pain management utilization.

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