Background: Low back pain can significantly reduce a patient’s quality of life if it is not treated properly. The SF-36 questionnaire assesses the patient’s quality of life with chronic low back pain. Transcutaneous vagus nerve stimulation (tVNS) is one of the treatment options for chronic pain. This study aims to determine how adding tVNS to exercise treatment affects the quality of life of individuals with chronic low back pain. Method: 22 subjects in total joined the study consecutively. They were randomly assigned to the intervention group or the control group. Eleven patients receiving exercise therapy without the addition of tVNS made up the control group, and 11 patients receiving exercise therapy and tVNS made up the intervention group. The SF-36 questionnaire was utilized to assess participants’ quality of life before and after two weeks of therapy. Throughout the study, safety and adverse events were monitored. Results: Both the control and intervention groups showed a positive effect on improving the SF-36 score. The improvement of the SF-36 score on the pain aspect differed significantly in the intervention group (p = 0.011). Adding tVNS to exercise therapy produces a better clinical response in improving the quality of life, especially in pain. Conclusion: tVNS should be considered as an additional therapy to increase patients’ quality of life with chronic low back pain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1069-1074
Number of pages6
JournalBali Medical Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2023


  • SF-36
  • low back pain
  • quality of life
  • tVNS


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