Original Article: PDF OnlyClinical Trial of Postoperative Dynamic Back Exercises After First Lumbar DiscectomyManniche, Claus, MD‡; Skall, Hanne F.‡; Braendholt, Lone†; Christensen, Birgitte H.‡; Christophersen, Lone, MD‡; Ellegaard, Birthe‡; Heilbuth, Annike†; lngerslev, Marianne§; Jørgensen, Ole E., MD§; Larsen, Elsebeth†; Lorentzen, Lisbeth§; Nielsen, Carsten J., MD*; Nielsen, Henrik, MD, PhD†; Windelin, Marianne§Author Information *From the Departments of Neurosurgery, University of Copenhagen †From the Departments of Rheumatology, Glostrup Hospital,University of Copenhagen ‡From the Departments of Gentofte, University of Copenhagen §From the Departments of Herlev Hospitals, University of Copenhagen Spine: January 1993 - Volume 18 - Issue 1 - p 92-97 Buy Abstract Ninety-six patients who had undergone first-time discectomy for herniated lumbar intervertebral discs were consecutively randomized to two physical rehabilitation programs: a program of high-intensity, dynamic back extension and abdominal exercises with occurrence of low back pain being the limiting factor or a traditional program of mild, generally mobilityimproving exercises within pain limits. Both groups underwent 14 hours of treatment during a 6-week period 5 weeks after surgery. At 26 weeks' follow-up, results indicated that patients who did the high-intensity exercises experienced greater success with regard to the patient disabilityindex and work capabilities. After 1 year, a trend that favored the use of intensive exercises could be observed. No differences were found in pain or objective measurements. A rehabilitation program of intensive exercises with occurrence of back pain being the limiting factor appears to increase patient behavioral support, resulting in work capacity improvements and patient self-rated disability levels. The results indicate that a 6-wk, 14-hr postoperative rehabilitation program is inadequate if objective postoperative deficit improvements are the desired goal. © Lippincott-Raven Publishers.