Cohort study of postural sway and low back pain: the Copenhagen City Heart Study

Anja Lykke Madsen*, Finn Gyntelberg, Jacob Louis Marott, Peter Schnohr, Jens Astrup

*Corresponding author for this work


PURPOSE: Low back pain is a significant health problem with a high prevalence. Studies of smaller cohorts of low back pain patients have indicated increased body sway. The present paper tests the hypothesis of an association between low back pain and postural sway in a large randomly selected population.

METHODS: The current study used the fifth examination (2011-2015) of The Copenhagen City Heart Study where 4543 participated. The participants answered a self-administered questionnaire regarding pain, physical activity, smoking, alcohol consumption, education, and other lifestyle factors. Measurement of postural body sway was performed using the CATSYS system.

RESULTS: Totally 1134 participants (25%) reported to have low back pain. Subjects with low back pain had higher sway area and sway velocity than subjects without.

CONCLUSION: When using multivariate statistical analysis, confounding factors such as male gender, higher age, larger body height, low education level, smoking, and low activity level explained the association between low back pain and postural sway.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean spine journal : official publication of the European Spine Society, the European Spinal Deformity Society, and the European Section of the Cervical Spine Research Society
Issue number12
Pages (from-to)4390-4396
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023


  • Cohort Studies
  • Humans
  • Low Back Pain/epidemiology
  • Male
  • Postural Balance
  • Posture
  • Surveys and Questionnaires


Dive into the research topics of 'Cohort study of postural sway and low back pain: the Copenhagen City Heart Study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this