REALISE: Rehabilitation after lumbar disc surgery. (WC2008-094)

Background

Starting date: 01/05/2011

For patients who underwent lumbar disc surgery, two forms of post-operative management exist. These are: a watchful waiting policy, or referral for exercise therapy immediately after discharge from hospital. There is low to moderate quality evidence that exercise programmes starting 4-6 weeks postoperatively are more effective than no treatment and that high intensity exercises are more effective than low intensity exercises. However, studies assessing cost-effectiveness and effectiveness of immediate intervention compared to a watchful waiting policy are lacking.