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Weinstein JN, Tosteson TD, Lurie JD et al. Spine 2010;35:1329–38.

This study demonstrates that the 4-year outcomes of surgery are better than those of non-operative treatment in patients with lumbar spinal stenosis.


Spinal stenosis patients typically present with back pain radiating to the lower extremities. SPORT (the Spine Patient Outcomes Research Trial) is on ongoing study involving both a randomized cohort and a concurrent observational cohort. Patients from 13 centers in 11 US states with 12 weeks of symptoms and confirmatory imaging were randomized to either standard decompression laminectomy or standard non-operative care, which included active physical therapy, counseling with home exercise instructions, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. The primary outcome measures were the Short Form-36 bodily pain and physical function scales and the modified Oswestry Disability index assessed at 6 weeks, 3 months, 6 months, and yearly up to 4 years.

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