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14 Articles in Volume 19, Issue #1
Analgesics of the Future: NKTR-181
Antidote to CDC Guideline; Plantar Fasciitis; Patient Input
Assessing and Treating Migraine in Women and Men
Demystifying Opioid-Induced Hyperalgesia
Editorial: Have We Gone Too Far? Can We Get Back?
How to Compel Patients to Complete Home Exercises
Inflammation Targeted Nanomedicine
Intravenous Stem Cell Administration for Ileitis
Invasive Surgery: Effective in Relieving Chronic Pain?
Pain Catastrophizing: What Practitioners Need to Know
Pain Therapy Options for the Home
Regenerative Medicine
The Future of Pain Management: An Experts' Roundtable
Whole Body Vibration: Potential Benefits in the Management of Pain and Physical Function

How to Compel Patients to Complete Home Exercises

These tips from the field may help encourage patients with chronic pain toward an exercise regimen.
Pages 60-61
Page 2 of 2

A recent study of patients with lower back pain showed that customized home-based exercises improved compliance.3 Participants who perceived the exercises as “individualized to their life situation and targeted to their back pain problem [helped]… improve adherence to exercise.”3

As well, it is important to focus on what the patient can do. Sometimes, patients “can be very fatalistic, saying, ‘I can’t do this. I can’t do anything,’” noted Dr. Shaw. He tries to break that thought pattern by saying, “You can’t do this, but you can do that. I reinforce the things that they are capable of doing.”

Involve Family and Peers

When possible, help the patient create a home support team.2 Family members can provide words of encouragement or press play on a patient’s favorite music to energize the exerciser. A favorite playlist or TV show played during exercise has been shown to enhance adherence.2 In addition to family members, peer involvement, whether via a social media forum that unites a group of patients with back pain, or a weekly exercise session, can create a positive network for patients that helps them adhere to home exercise. 3

Follow Up

Patients often prefer to be held accountable with physical therapists or physicians, whether in the form of a follow-up appointment, a diary, or a weekly spreadsheet of completed exercises that they email to a provider.2 In a qualitative study of 29 patients with lower back pain, the patients interviewed “reported the need to be supported and to have close follow-up to maintain their motivation to exercise.”2 

Last updated on: April 12, 2019
Continue Reading:
How to Talk to Your Chronic Pain Patients
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