Patient-centered outcomes: Domain importance predicts health care use following physical therapy.
INTRODUCTION: Identifying patients with musculoskeletal pain who are at risk for additional health care use is important for improving the value of physical therapists' services. We previously identified three subgroups based on the importance attached by patients to improvements in outcome domains including a (1) Pain and Function Outcomes Important subgroup; (2) Pain Important subgroup; and (3) Multiple Outcome Domains Important subgroup. OBJECTIVE: The primary aim was to determine whether subgroups based on patient-determined outcomes of importance predicted any additional pain-related health care use after an episode of physical therapy. A secondary aim was to determine if subgroup membership predicted use of specific services. DESIGN: Secondary analysis of a longitudinal cohort. SETTING: Ambulatory outpatient physical therapy clinics. PATIENTS: Two hundred forty-six patients seeking physical therapy recruited from the Optimal Screening for Prediction of Referral and Outcome (OSPRO) cohort study. INTERVENTIONS: Patients completed a demographic and health history questionnaire, numeric pain rating scale, region-specific disability measure, and Charlson Comorbidity Index. Subgroup membership was determined based on responses to the Patient Centered Outcome Questionnaire. At 1 year, patients reported use of health care since discharge from physical therapy. Separate logistic regression models determined whether subgroup membership predicted additional health care use. RESULTS: Compared to the Pain and Function Outcomes Important subgroup, the Pain Important subgroup had higher adjusted odds (95% confidence interval [CI]) for the primary outcome of any additional health care use (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] 2.47, 95% CI 1.01-6.00) and secondary outcomes of opioid use (aOR 9.45, 95% CI 2.87-31.17), injection (aOR 4.09, 95% CI 1.25-13.41), and surgery (aOR 5.10, 95% CI 1.15-22.67). There were no significant differences in health care utilization between the Pain and Function Outcomes Important and Multiple Outcome Domains Important subgroups. CONCLUSION: In this cohort, patients with a singular focus on pain improvements were at higher risk for additional health care, including opioid use, injection, and surgery. These findings are exploratory and need to be confirmed in other cohorts.
Zeppieri, G; George, SZ; Bialosky, J; Lentz, TA
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