Background The aim of the present study was to provide an overview of the literature addressing the role of genetic factors and biomarkers predicting pain recovery in newly diagnosed lumbar radicular pain (LRP) patients. Methods The search was performed in Medline OVID, Embase, PsycInfo and Web of Science (2004 to 2015). Only prospective studies of patients with LRP addressing the role of genetic factors (genetic susceptibility) and pain biomarkers (proteins in serum) were included. Two independent reviewers extracted the data and assessed methodological quality. Results The search identified 880 citations of which 15 fulfilled the inclusion criteria. Five genetic variants; i.e., OPRM1 rs1799971 G allele, COMT rs4680 G allele, MMP1 rs1799750 2G allele, IL1α rs1800587 T allele, IL1RN rs2234677 A allele, were associated with reduced recovery of LRP. Three biomarkers; i.e., TNFα, IL6 and IFNα, were associated with persistent LRP. Conclusion The present results indicate that several genetic factors and biomarkers may predict slow recovery in LRP. Still, there is a need for replication of the findings. A stricter use of nomenclature is also highly necessary. Trial registration The review is registered PROSPERO 20th of November 2015. Registration number is CRD42015029125 .
This item's license is: Attribution 4.0 International