The relationship between life purpose with depression and disability in acute low back pain patients

Elizabeth Salt, Amanda C. Wiggins, Mary Kay Rayens, Rachele Johnson, Jaime K. Hardy, Suzanne Segerstrom, Leslie J. Crofford

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Life purpose in acute low back pain patients is not well described in published literature. METHODS/PURPOSE: We used linear regression models to describe the relationship of life purpose with perceived functional disability and depression in persons with acute low back pain (N = 42) participating in a randomized clinical trial to prevent transition to chronic low back pain. RESULTS: In our predominantly female sample (81.8%) with a mean age of 53 years (SD = 11.6 years), 52% worked full-time. Adjusting for age, gender, and working status, life purpose was a significant correlate of depression (p =.007). For every 10-unit increase in life purpose score, the estimated depression score decreased by almost 2.5 points. A significant relationship between life purpose and perceived functional disability was not identified. CONCLUSION: Life purpose likely is a modifiable risk factor for depression in acute low back pain patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)287-291
Number of pages5
JournalOrthopaedic Nursing
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported in part by the National Center for Research Resources and the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences, National Institutes

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 by National Association of Orthopaedic Nurses.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Advanced and Specialized Nursing


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