Smoking, Workers’ Comp Status Push Disability and Pain Scores Up

Terry Stanton

A review of more than 13,000 patients undergoing treatment for spine pain found that patients who smoked had the worst disability scores, followed by previous smokers; nonsmokers had the least pain.

The study, conducted by Mark L. Prasarn, MD, and colleagues and presented at the AAOS 2012 Annual Meeting, also found that patients with workers’ compensation claims or litigation—so-called “secondary gain” issues—had worse pain and disability scores than other patients.

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