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Psychosocial aspects of musculoskeletal disorders

This Collection is no longer accepting submissions.

New Content ItemHealthcare’s reliance on biomedical and pharmaceutical interventions does not prevent suffering from musculoskeletal ailments. Increasingly, evidence-based medicine shows that a biopsychosocial approach is favored instead of opioids prescriptions and imaging referrals. Patient education, exercise, and cognitive behavioral treatments benefit those seeking care, yet how do healthcare professionals implement such interventions (when their training was based on biomedicine)?

There is a big gap between the translation of evidence in clinical evidence  - a biopsychosocial framework should integrate the biomed and psychosocial to explain and treat phenomena like cross-talk in chronic MSK pain. There is real hope that utilizing a psychosocial framework will benefit patients.

We welcomed Research Articles, front-end matter, and Study Protocols on all investigations into this field, such as bio-psychosocial risk and prognostic factors, patient education, communication, biopsychosocial pain management and/or research into contextual (placebo and nocebo) factors. Studies aiming to increase clinical tool reliability and validity in low-income/ socioeconomic settings were encouraged to submit, as well as mind-body approaches such as meditation, mindfulness, hypnosis, imagery, neurofeedback, yoga or cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT).

Submissions focusing on a rheumatic condition, not the joint/musculoskeletal aspect, were considered but may have been transferred to BMC Rheumatology pre-acceptance.

Meet the Collection Editors

Dr Markus Rupp

Markus Rupp works as an Orthopaedic and Trauma Surgeon at the University Medical Center Regensburg, Germany. He is head of Infection Surgery and Research Affairs at the Department of Trauma Surgery.  His clinical research interests are bone and joint infections. Markus is driven to further improve diagnostics and treatment for his patients by translation of basic research into the clinical daily life. One of his main research focus is to determine and improving psychological well-being of his patients.

Dr Anita Amorim 
Dr Anita Amorim is a Lecturer in Physiotherapy and Early Career Researcher at the University of Sydney, Australia. Her research interests include risk factors and management of chronic musculoskeletal pain. Anita completed her PhD in Health Sciences in 2018 and a one-year postdoctoral research fellowship in Public Health in 2020, both at the University of Sydney. Anita’s research vision is to improve the quality of life of people living with chronic musculoskeletal pain and reduce the global burden of this condition for patients and the healthcare system. Her research program has taken a translational approach in reducing unnecessary healthcare utilization in people with chronic musculoskeletal pain through behavioral change. With her experience in designing and conducting methodologically robust and highly impactful research, Anita has secured over $1 million in competitive research funds as Chief and Associate Investigator and published in high-quality peer-reviewed scientific journals.

Prof Bart Staal
Prof Bart Staal is a physiotherapist and human movement scientist by background and further specialized in clinical epidemiology. He obtained his PhD from the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam (2003) for which he studied  the effects of a cognitive-behavior oriented graded activity program for airline workers with low back pain. Bart currently works as a professor of Musculoskeletal Rehabilitation at the HAN University of Applied Sciences and as a senior research fellow at the Radboud University Medical Center, both in Nijmegen the Netherlands. His research themes include: effectiveness of physiotherapy, communication between healthcare providers and patients, and personalized care in patients with musculoskeletal disorders, Bart was an Associate Editor of BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders since 2010, section Editor of the section Rehabilitation, Physical therapy and occupational health in 2014 and is Senior Editorial Board member since 2020. 

Dr Derek Clewley
Dr. Derek Clewley is an Assistant Professor at Duke University in the Doctor of Physical Therapy Division.  His areas of research and clinical expertise are related to the management of neck pain.  He has a background in systematic review methodology as well as health services research.  Dr. Clewley teaches content related to musculoskeletal disorders. 


Dr Imran Khan Niazi
Dr Imran Khan Niazi has been working for the past 12 years as an active researcher in physical and neural rehabilitation, focusing on non-pharmacological/conservative modes of treatment to optimize the patient's rehabilitation journey and improve their quality of life. He has extensive experience working in multidisciplinary teams that include chiropractors, physiotherapists, medical doctors, engineers, and neuroscientists, with a strong patient-centered, evidence-informed approach. For further details please visit Imran’s ResearchGate or Google Scholar profile.

  1. Workplace factors are important predictors of occurrence of musculoskeletal pain among different occupational populations. In healthcare, a psychologically unsafe work environment can negatively affect the emo...

    Authors: Maha E. Ibrahim, Safaa M. El-Zoghby, Nancy M. Zaghloul, Shaimaa A. Shehata and Rasha M. Farghaly
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2024 25:167
  2. The prevalence of anxiety among patients undergoing arthroscopic surgery and its association with postoperative function has been well documented; however, the level of anxiety and anxiety-related characterist...

    Authors: Chae-Chil Lee, Jae-Ryong Cha, Jang-Ho Park, Min-Seok Kim and Ki-Bong Park
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:980
  3. To investigate the optimal duration of applying a venous foot pump (VFP) in the prevention of venous thromboembolism (VTE) following hip and knee arthroplasty.

    Authors: Siqi Gu, Yu-e Chen, Mingxing Lei, Jiahui Li, Wanying Li, Meihong Zhang, Hongxia Zhu, Mengying Ma, Dan Kong and Yuan Gao
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:931
  4. Despite the existing evidence regarding the interrelated relationship between pain and obesity, knowledge about patients’ perspectives of this relationship is scarce, especially from patients with chronic pain...

    Authors: Elin Storm, Nina Bendelin, Kim Bergström Wessman, Maria M Johansson, Mathilda Björk and Huan-Ji Dong
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:840
  5. Clinical status of subjects with knee osteoarthritis (KOA) is influenced by a complex interaction of several biopsychosocial factors. The use of patient-reported measures (PROM) is considered the gold standard...

    Authors: José Pérez-Maletzki, Fernando Domínguez-Navarro, Sergio Roig-Casasús, Beatriz Díaz-Díaz, Felipe Querol-Giner, Carmen García-Gomáriz and José-María Blasco
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:833
  6. Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) are commonly encountered in hemodialysis (HD) patients. However, the causes linked to these disorders are still partially defined. The aim of this study was to determine the fr...

    Authors: Mohammed Kamal Nassar, Samar Tharwat, Sara M. Abdel-Gawad, Rabab Elrefaey, Alaa A. Elsawi, Abdelrahman Mohamed Elsayed, Eman Nagy, Shimaa Shabaka and Rasha Samir Shemies
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:788
  7. Lower back pain (LBP) is a common musculoskeletal disorder that may affect students’ daily lives. Recent psychological research showed a relevant connection between LBP and multidimensional health. However, th...

    Authors: Mohammed M Alshehri, Amjad M Alqhtani, Shahd H Gharawi, Raghad A Sharahily, Wajd A Fathi, Shahad G Alnamy, Shaima A Alothman, Yasir S. Alshehri, Ahmed S. Alhowimel, Bader A. Alqahtani and Aqeel M. Alenazi
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:646
  8. Osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee is one of the most common and disabling conditions worldwide. A neglected aspect of knee OA is its psychosocial impact, such as shame. However, assessment tools to measure shame...

    Authors: Jia Ying Yeo, Chien Joo Lim and Bryan Yijia Tan
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:633
  9. To evaluate the effectiveness of a discourse-based psychological intervention on perioperative anxiety, pain and life satisfaction of patients with AIS.

    Authors: Luosha Bi, Chengjun Pan, Jiaxing Li, Jiahui Zhou, Xiangyu Wang and Shiqi Cao
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:422
  10. People with patellofemoral pain (PFP) exhibit impaired psychological and pain processing factors (i.e., kinesiophobia, pain catastrophizing and pressure pain thresholds [PPTs]). However, it remains unclear whe...

    Authors: Ana Flavia Balotari Botta, Júlia de Cássia Pinto da Silva, Helder dos Santos Lopes, Michelle C. Boling, Ronaldo Valdir Briani and Fábio Mícolis de Azevedo
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:397
  11. While fear of movement is an important predictor of pain and disability in osteoarthritis (OA), its impact on patients with hip OA remains uncertain. This study aimed to determine whether fear of movement, eva...

    Authors: Ryo Hidaka, Takeyuki Tanaka, Kazuaki Hashikura, Hiroyuki Oka, Ko Matsudaira, Toru Moro, Kenta Matsuda, Hirotaka Kawano and Sakae Tanaka
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:388
  12. Patellofemoral pain (PFP) is a common knee disorder that causes persistent pain, lower self-reported function and quality of life. People with PFP also present with altered psychological factors, which are ass...

    Authors: Liliam Barbuglio Del Priore, Vitoria Ozores Perez, Ronaldo Valdir Briani, Lucca Andre Liporoni Bego Farinelli, Júlia de Cássia Pinto da Silva, Odisséia Marli Gimenes Martins, Fábio Arruda Lopes, Anita Barros Amorim, Evangelos Pappas and Fábio Mícolis de Azevedo
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:372
  13. Neuropathic pain arises as a direct consequence of a lesion or disease affecting the somatosensory system. Pharmacological treatments for neuropathic pain often fail despite following guidelines. Interdiscipli...

    Authors: Nazdar Ghafouri, Emmanuel Bäckryd, Elena Dragioti, Marcelo Rivano Fischer, Åsa Ringqvist and Björn Gerdle
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:357
  14. Approximately 20% of total knee arthroplasty patients experience persistent postsurgical pain one year after surgery. No qualitative studies have explored previous stories of painful or stressful life experien...

    Authors: Vibeke Bull Sellevold, Unni Olsen, Maren Falch Lindberg, Simen A. Steindal, Arild Aamodt, Anners Lerdal and Alfhild Dihle
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:305
  15. Chronic pain and depression are frequent comorbidities in primary care. Depression among other psychosocial factors play a role in the clinical course of chronic pain.

    Authors: Concepció Rambla, Enric Aragonès, Meritxell Pallejà-Millán, Catarina Tomé-Pires, Germán López-Cortacans, Elisabet Sánchez-Rodríguez and Jordi Miró
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:270
  16. Large heterogeneity exists in the clinical manifestation of hip osteoarthritis (OA). It is therefore not surprising that pain and disability in individuals with hip OA and after total hip arthroplasty (THA) ca...

    Authors: Abner Sergooris, Jonas Verbrugghe, Thomas Matheve, Maaike Van Den Houte, Bruno Bonnechère, Kristoff Corten, Katleen Bogaerts and Annick Timmermans
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:224
  17. Musculoskeletal pains (MSPs) in sport are cause of poor performances and loss of competition in athletes. The present study aimed at determining the prevalence of MSPs with regard to sport disciplines and athl...

    Authors: Hassane Malam Moussa Ahmet, Elysée Claude Bika Lele, Wiliam Richard Guessogo, Wiliam Mbang Bian, Jessica Guyot, Ahmadou, Peguy Brice Assomo-Ndemba, Clarisse Noel Ayina, Loick Pradel Kojom Foko, Caroline Dupré, Nathalie Barth, Bienvenu Bongue, Abdoulaye Ba, Abdoulaye Samb, Samuel Honoré Mandengue and Jerson Mekoulou Ndongo
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:210
  18. To compare the clinical efficacy of open debridement screw fixation combined with bone grafting, percutaneous screw fixation, and percutaneous screw fixation combined with injection of platelet-rich plasma (PR...

    Authors: Zhenye Zhong, Meiyang Wei, Zhaoying Jiang, Jinshui Chen, Yanda He and Kaifeng Lin
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:204
  19. The prevalence of anxiety in patients undergoing total knee arthroplasty (TKA) and its association with postoperative functions are well known; however, the levels of anxiety or anxiety-related characteristics...

    Authors: Kwang-Hwan Jung, Jang-Ho Park, Jae-Woo Ahn and Ki-Bong Park
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2023 24:161
  20. Low back pain (LBP) is one of the most common musculoskeletal problems affecting daycare (nursery) workers. We aimed to identify the psychosocial factors influencing LBP in daycare workers.

    Authors: Xuliang Shi, Megumi Aoshima, Tadayuki Iida, Shuichi Hiruta, Yuichiro Ono and Atsuhiko Ota
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2022 23:1055
  21. Although treatment-resistant depression (TRD) is a major public health problem that increases mortality due to suicides, a considerable percentage of patients do not respond adequately to variable treatments. ...

    Authors: Takayoshi Matsui, Kazuhiro Hara, Makoto Iwata, Shuntaro Hojo, Nobuyuki Shitara, Yuzo Endo, Hideoki Fukuoka, Masaki Matsui and Hiroshi Kawaguchi
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2022 23:907
  22. Chronic pain and the accompanying level of disability is a healthcare crisis that reaches epidemic proportions and is now considered a world level crisis. Chronic non-specific low back pain (CNLBP) contributes...

    Authors: Antonio J. Varela and Kathryn W. Van Asselt
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2022 23:21
  23. The pathogenesis of syndromes of widespread musculoskeletal pain remains an enigma. The present study sought to determine if psychological states, job satisfaction, pain intensity, and sleep problems contributed ...

    Authors: Jan Olav Christensen, Sissel Johansen and Stein Knardahl
    Citation: BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2017 18:140