Alexander Technique: Cost Effective Option for Chronic Back Pain


There’s more good news for people suffering with back pain. A new article was published in the BMJ on 11 Dec ’08, which gives an economic analysis of the research into different treatments for back pain, including the Alexander Technique, that was published in the BMJ Aug ’08.

The findings of the ATEAM Trial show that massage offered little long term benefit for patients with simple back pain and that a Doctor’s exercise prescription, on its own, resulted in just a moderate effect on disability scores. However, the Alexander Technique performed better, on all the measured outcomes, than either massage or exercise.

If you would like more information about this research, you may read my article on the topic here:  ATEAM Trial into Treatments for Chronic and Recurrent Back Pain

Economic Analysis of the ATEAM Trial

The Economic Analysis of the ATEAM research results has now shown that just six Alexander Technique lessons followed by exercise was ‘the most effective, and cost effective option’. The paper goes on to suggest that this option is one that could possibly be used by the NHS in Primary Care, for patients with chronic back pain.

Meanwhile the Alexander Technique is, of course, still available as private lessons.

It is important to remember that not all back pain can be resolved in just six Alexander Technique lessons plus some exercise. However, it is encouraging to see that the highest significant long term improvement in disability scores plus an improvement the patient’s quality of life, can be seen – and that this also offers a cost effective option for chronic back pain sufferers.

If you would like to read the full economic analysis of the ATEAM Trial visit: BMJ 2008;337:a2656

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