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Meditation and Exercise to Treat Chronic Back Pain

June 5, 2019


This clinical trial examines the effectiveness of meditation and exercise on individuals with chronic back pain. Participants will listen to an audiobook, practice quiet mindfulness, and walk on a treadmill to test these factors.


Study Information

This is a single-blind, interventional, randomized, parallel assignment with an estimated 42 participants. The study began on January 28, 2018 and is estimated to be completed in June 2019.


Inclusion Criteria

  • All sexes, ages 18 to 60 years old
  • Body mass index within the normal to overweight range (18.5-29.9)
  • Resting heart rate is 60 to 100 beats per minute
  • Resting blood pressure is less than or equal to 140/90
  • Able to independently walk community distances without external support (e.g., walker, cane)


Exclusion Criteria

  • Age less than 18 or greater than 60 years
  • Body Mass Index (BMI) ≥ 30 or ≤ 18.4
  • Cardiovascular or respiratory disease
  • Neurological disease, unrelated to low back pain
  • Radicular low back pain
  • Back pain associated with neuropathy
  • Diabetes mellitus, Types 1 and 2
  • Diagnosed with a chronic pain condition, unrelated to low back pain
  • Acute pain
  • Regular participation in high intensity athletics/sporting activities
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Currently pregnant
  • Current cigarette smoker
  • Ongoing litigation associated with back pain
  • Inability to walk independently without external support (e.g. walker)
  • Regular participation in meditation techniques or training in Mindfulness-based stress reduction


You may participate in this study at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States, 15282. IF you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact Anna M Polaski, BS.



This studied is sponsored by Duquesne University and the University of Pittsburgh. The Principal Investigators for Duquesne University are Matthew C. Kostek, PhD and Benedict J Kolber, PhD. The Principal Investigator for the University of Pittsburgh is Eric Helm, MD.

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