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Table 5 Prognostic factors reported in 3 or more studies and their association with poor outcome

From: Prognostic factors in non-surgically treated sciatica: A systematic review

Prognostic factor studied Positive association with poor outcome No association
Socio-demographic/individual   
Older age 0 6 [12, 13, 15, 16, 18, 19]
Gender 0 5 [1214, 18, 19]
Previous sciatica 0 3 [12, 13, 18]
Smoking 0 4 [12, 14, 18, 19]
Higher BMI/obesity (15% overweight) 0 3 [12, 15, 18]
Clinical (symptoms & signs)   
Longer duration of symptoms 1 [18] 3 [12, 13, 15]
Baseline pain/symptom severity 1 [13*] 2 [12, 18]
Neurological deficit 1 [12] 3 [14, 15, 18]
Nerve root tension signs 1 [18] 2 [12, 14]
Clinical (radiological findings)   
Level of disc herniation 0 5 [1216]
Smaller disc prolapse 1 [15] 3 [1214]
Occupational   
Heaviness of work 0 3 [14, 15, 19]
  1. * Beauvais et al [13] reported that pain/symptom severity sufficient to require inpatient treatment was associated with poor outcome.
  2. NB Komori et al [17] is excluded from this table due to poor methodological quality