The University of Newcastle, Australia

NHMRC funding success 2016

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Dr Christopher Williams has been awarded more than $1,000,000 in NHMRC funding commencing in 2016. He has received an Early Career Fellowship and a Project Grant.


About the projects

Early Career Fellowship - Understanding the association between low back pain and risk factors for chronic disease

Being overweight or obese and smoking are believed to be significant contributors to the development of long term back pain. However we know little about the relationship between low back pain and these risks for chronic disease. This research aims to understand these relationships by testing if weight and smoking programs reduce low back pain disability in overweight or smoking patients, and secondly if back pain also influences risk factors for chronic disease.

Project Grant - HELP - A healthy lifestyle intervention for patients with chronic low back pain

Instead of receiving care to address factors associated with chronic low back pain, such as being overweight and smoking, patients are referred for expensive and ineffective treatments, for which they wait for extended periods. This leads to worsening of low back pain symptoms and higher risks of other chronic disease. We will conduct the first study to assess if weight loss and smoking cessation programs can improve low back pain in patients waiting for surgery consultation.

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