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Table 1 Baseline characteristics of study population

From: Characteristics of patients with chronic back pain who benefit from acupuncture

  Individualized acupuncture Standardized acupuncture Simulated acupuncture Usual care Total
Characteristic (n = 157) (n = 158) (n = 162) (n = 161) (n = 638)
Demographics      
Age, mean (s.d.) 47 (13) 49 (13) 47 (14) 46 (13) 47 (13)
Gender, % Female 68 56 60 64 62
Education, % College graduate 49 57 56 51 53
Employment      
   % Not employed* 22 21 22 19 21
   % Sedentary job 32 31 30 31 31
   % Light or medium lifting job 31 33 31 33 32
   % Heavy lifting job 15 15 18 17 16
Back pain history and current episode      
Roland score (0-23), mean (s.d.) 10.8 (5.2) 10.8 (5.6) 9.8 (5.2) 11.0 (5.2) 10.6 (5.3)
Bothersomeness score (0-10), mean (s.d.) 5.0 (2.5) 5.0 (2.3) 4.9 (2.4) 5.4 (2.4) 5.1 (2.4)
Duration of chronic low back pain, % 1+ year(s) 69 74 60 70 68
Number of low back pain days in past 3 months, mean (s.d.) 68 (26) 73 (22) 70 (24) 73 (23) 71 (24)
Disability days**, % any 42 43 40 43 42
Pain travels down knee, % Yes 21 22 22 21 21
Prior injection, surgery, or hospitalization for low back pain, % Yes 12 10 10 11 11
Any medication use in past week      
   % None 38 38 37 35 37
   % Narcotics 11 13 11 13 12
   % Other 51 49 53 52 51
Mental health      
SF-36 Mental Health component score, mean (s.d.) 53 (8) 54 (8) 54 (7) 53 (8) 53 (8)
Self-efficacy and Expectations      
Likelihood of self-managing future back pain, % Very likely 3 2 8 6 5
Expectation of acupuncture helpfulness (0-10 scale)      
   % Lower two tertiles (0-7) 57 53 56 49 54
   % Top tertile (8-10) 25 24 28 33 28
   % Could not rate 18 23 16 18 19
  1. * Includes homemaker, student, unemployed, and retired.
  2. ** Any days spent in bed, lost from work or school, or cutting down on usual activities due to back problems during past month.