Effectiveness of a Guided Internet- and Mobile-Based Intervention for Patients with Chronic Back Pain and Depression (WARD-BP): A Multicenter, Pragmatic Randomized Controlled Trial

Publikation: Beiträge in ZeitschriftenZeitschriftenaufsätzeForschungbegutachtet


  • Harald Baumeister
  • Sarah Paganini
  • Lasse Bosse Sander
  • Jiaxi Lin
  • Sandra Schlicker
  • Yannik Terhorst
  • Morten Moshagen
  • Jürgen Bengel
  • Dirk Lehr
  • David Daniel Ebert

Introduction: There is neither strong evidence on effective treatments for patients with chronic back pain (CBP) and depressive disorder nor sufficiently available mental health care offers. Objective: The aim is to assess the effectiveness of internet- A nd mobile-based interventions (IMI) as a scalable approach for treating depression in a routine care setting. Methods: This is an observer-masked, multicenter, pragmatic randomized controlled trial with a randomization ratio of 1:1.Patients with CBP and diagnosed depressive disorder (mild to moderate severity) were recruited from 82 orthopedic rehabilitation clinics across Germany. The intervention group (IG) received a guided depression IMI tailored to CBP next to treatment-as-usual (TAU; including medication), while the control group (CG) received TAU. The primary outcome was observer-masked clinician-rated Hamilton depression severity (9-week follow-up). The secondary outcomes were: Further depression outcomes, pain-related outcomes, health-related quality of life, and work capacity. Biostatistician blinded analyses using regression models were conducted by intention-to-treat and per protocol analysis. Results: Between October 2015 and July 2017, we randomly assigned 210 participants (IG, n = 105; CG, n = 105), mostly with only a mild pain intensity but substantial pain disability. No statistically significant difference in depression severity between IG and CG was observed at the 9-week follow-up (β =-0.19, 95% CI-0.43 to 0.05). Explorative secondary depression (4/9) and pain-related (4/6) outcomes were in part significant (p < 0.05). Health-related quality of life was significantly higher in the IG. No differences were found in work capacity. Conclusion: The results indicate that an IMI for patients with CBP and depression in a routine care setting has limited impact on depression. Benefits in pain and health-related outcomes suggest that an IMI might still be a useful measure to improve routine care.

ZeitschriftPsychotherapy and Psychosomatics
Seiten (von - bis)255-268
Anzahl der Seiten14
PublikationsstatusErschienen - 2021

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