Using Scalable Vector Graphics and Geographical Information Systems in a Back Pain Study

  • Gheorghita Ghinea
  • David Gill


According to a Department of Health survey, in Britain back pain affects 40% of the adult population, 5% of which have to take time off to recover (Boucher, 1999). This causes a large strain on the health system, with some 40% of back pain sufferers consulting a GP for help and 10% seeking alternative medicine therapy (Boucher, 1999). Due to the large number of people affected, back pain alone cost industry £9090 million in 1997/8 (Frank and De Sousa, 2000), with between 90 and 100 million days of sickness and invalidity benefit paid out per year for back pain complaints (Frank and De Sousa, 2000; Main, 1983; Papageorgiou et al., 1995). Back pain is not confined to the UK alone, but is a worldwide problem; in the USA, for instance, 19% of all workers’ compensation claims are made with regard to back pain. Although this is a lot less than the percentage of people affected by back pain in the UK, it should be noted that in the USA not all workers are covered by insurance and not all workers will make a claim for back pain (Jefferson and McGrath, 1996). Any improvement in the way that patients with back pain can be analysed should therefore be viewed as one potentially capable of significantly saving both benefit expenditure and lost man-hours.


Back Pain Environmental System Research Institute Pain Type Pain Drawing Active Server Pages 
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© Springer-Verlag London 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gheorghita Ghinea
  • David Gill

There are no affiliations available

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