Predictors of Lumbar Spine Degeneration and Low Back Pain in the Community: The Johnston County Osteoarthritis Project.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

OBJECTIVE: To determine the incidence and worsening of lumbar spine structure and low back pain (LBP) and whether they are predicted by demographic characteristics or clinical characteristics or appendicular joint osteoarthritis (OA). METHODS: Paired baseline (2003-2004) and follow-up (2006-2010) lumbar spine radiographs from the Johnston County Osteoarthritis Project were graded for osteophytes (OST), disc space narrowing (DSN), spondylolisthesis, and presence of facet joint OA (FOA). Spine OA was defined as at least mild OST and mild DSN at the same level for any level of the lumbar spine. LBP, comorbidities, and back injury were self-reported. Weibull models were used to estimate hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs) of spine phenotypes accounting for potential predictors including demographic characteristics, clinical characteristics, comorbidities, obesity, and appendicular OA. RESULTS: Obesity was a consistent and strong predictor of incidence of DSN (HR 1.80 [95% CI 1.09-2.98]), spine OA (HR 1.56 [95% CI 1.01-2.41]), FOA (HR 4.99 [95% CI 1.46-17.10]), spondylolisthesis (HR 1.87 [95% CI 1.02-3.43]), and LBP (HR 1.75 [95% CI 1.19-2.56]), and worsening of DSN (HR 1.51 [95% CI 1.09-2.09]) and LBP (HR 1.51 [95% CI 1.12-2.06]). Knee OA was a predictor of incident FOA (HR 4.18 [95% CI 1.44-12.2]). Spine OA (HR 1.80 [95% CI 1.24-2.63]) and OST (HR 1.85 [95% CI 1.02-3.36]) were predictors of incidence of LBP. Hip OA (HR 1.39 [95% CI 1.04-1.85]) and OST (HR 1.58 [95% CI 1.00-2.49]) were predictors of LBP worsening. CONCLUSION: Among the multiple predictors of spine phenotypes, obesity was a common predictor for both incidence and worsening of lumbar spine degeneration and LBP.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Goode, AP; Cleveland, RJ; George, SZ; Schwartz, TA; Kraus, VB; Renner, JB; Gracely, RH; DeFrate, LE; Hu, D; Jordan, JM; Golightly, YM

Published Date

  • October 2022

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 74 / 10

Start / End Page

  • 1659 - 1666

PubMed ID

  • 33973412

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC8578580

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 2151-4658

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1002/acr.24643


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States