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Dr Markus Hübscher

RESEARCHER PROFILE

Honorary Postdoctoral Research Fellow


Dr Markus Hüebscher is an honorary postdoctoral research fellow at NeuRA with qualifications in exercise science and psychology. He obtained his PhD in Sports Science from Frankfurt University in 2007.

In 2011, Dr Hübscher moved to Australia to take up a fulltime postdoc in the back pain research group at Sydney University with Prof Kathryn Refshauge. At the completion of his fellowship in 2013, Dr Hübscher moved to Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA), where he has been a postdoctoral research fellow in the McAuley Pain Group until September 2016.

Markus has published over 60 articles in peer-reviewed journals, including leading journals such as JAMA Internal Medicine, PLOS Medicine, Pain, and Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise. He has also authored 5 book chapters. Follow Markus’ work on Google Scholar.

Markus has been serving as reviewer for important journals (e.g., Pain, Physical Therapy, British Journal of Sports Medicine, European Journal of Epidemiology, Sports Medicine) and international conferences (World Confederation for Physical Therapy Congress, International Low Back Pain Forum).  He was also an associate editor for the journals BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders and PLOS ONE.

In 2016, Markus relocated to Berlin to take up a position as research associate for Health Technology Assessment (HTA) of non-drug interventions at the Federal Joint Committee, the highest decision-making body of the joint self-government of physicians, dentists, psychotherapists, hospitals and health insurance funds in Germany. Since 2019, he has been working as Clinical Affairs and Vigilance Manager at Storz Medical in Switzerland.

Since finishing his postdoc at NeuRA, Markus has continued to work with the McAuley Group on several projects (see below). He has also been supervising several Master/PhD students at NeuRA (Aidan Traeger, Edel O’Hagan, Hopin Lee, Matthew Bagg, Ian Skinner).

Projects Dr Markus Hübscher is currently involved with

CURRENT PROJECTS

RESOLVE Trial for Chronic Low Back Pain

For people with long term back pain that is not getting better. We are testing two pain treatment programs that target the brain, for people with chronic low back pain.

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RESOLVE Trial for Chronic Low Back Pain

Medicines for Back Pain

Medicines are the most common treatment for back pain. The aim of this program of research is to improve our understanding of the clinical effects of medicines.

Studies currently in progress:

  1. Scoping review of paracetamol, NSAIDs and opioid analgesics for chronic low back pain (led by Matthew K Bagg). The objective of this study is to identify and describe the characteristics of available clinical trials of commonly used analgesic medicines for chronic low back pain. This information will inform the design and conduct of other studies in the research program.
  2. Paracetamol, NSAIDs and opioid analgesics for chronic low back pain: a network meta-analysis (led by Matthew K Bagg). The objective of this study is to produce information about the clinical effects of available analgesic medicines for chronic low back pain. This information will be available in a Cochrane review to assist clinical prescription of medicines. The protocol is published and available here.
  3. Prescribing practices of medicines for adults with low back pain: a systematic review (led by Michael Wewege). The objective of this study is to determine how different medicines are prescribed to adults with low back pain and how this differs across countries. The protocol for this study is being developed.
  4. Analgesic medicines for adults with low back pain: a network meta-analysis (led by Michael Wewege). The objective of this study is to evaluate the comparative effectiveness of a range of analgesic medicines for adults across different classifications of low back pain. The protocol for this study has been submitted for publication.
  5. Muscle relaxant medicines for low back pain: a systematic review and meta-analysis (led by Aidan Cashin and Thiago Folly). The objective of this study is to determine the effectiveness and tolerability of muscle relaxant medicines for adults with low back pain. The protocol is available here.
  6. Novel biologic medicines for low back pain: a systematic review and meta-analysis (led by Rodrigo Rizzo). The objective of this study is to determine the effectiveness and tolerability of novel biologic medicines for adults with low back pain. The protocol is available here.

Completed studies:

  1. Evaluation of the impact of unpublished data from clinical trial registries on the effects of medicines for low back pain (led by Matthew Bagg). The objective of this study was to evaluate whether there is a difference between clinical trial data that are published and those that are not published. The findings are published in the Journal of Clinical Epidemiology.
  2. Antidepressant medicines for low back pain: a systematic review and meta-analysis (led by Michael Ferraro). The objective of this study was to determine the effectiveness and tolerability of antidepressant medicines for adults with low back pain. The findings have been submitted for publication. The protocol is available here.

Medicines for Back Pain – Publications:

  • Bagg MK, McLachlan AJ, Maher CG, Kamper SJ, Williams CM, Henschke N, Wand BM, Moseley GL, Hübscher M, O’Connell NE, van Tulder MW, Nikolakopoulou A, McAuley JH. (2018). Paracetamol, NSAIDS and opioid analgesics for chronic low back pain: a network meta-analysis [Protocol]. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, Issue 6. doi: 10.1002/14651858.CD013045. PMCID: PMC6513465
  • Bagg MK, O’Hagan E, Zahara P, Wand BM, Hübscher M, Moseley GL, McAuley JH. (2020). Reviews may overestimate the effectiveness of medicines for back pain: systematic review and meta-analysis. Journal of Clinical Epidemiology. doi: 10.1016/ j.jclinepi.2019.12.006. PMID: 31816418

Medicines for Back Pain – Registrations of Study Protocols:

  • Folly T, Bagg MK, Wewege M, Ferraro MC, Schabrun S, Gustin SM, Day R, McAuley JH. (2019) UMbRELLA: Understanding efficacy and safety of Muscle RELaxant medicines for Low back pain – systematic Literature review and meta-Analysis (protocol).Open Science Framework, available at: https://osf.io/xuw5h
  • Rizzo RN, Bagg MK, Ferraro MC, Wewege M, Cashin A, Leake HB, O’Hagan E, Jones M, McAuley JH. (2020). Efficacy and safety of medicines targeting neurotrophic factors in the management of low back pain: protocol for a systematic review and meta-analysis. Open Science Framework, available at: https://osf.io/zax6d
  • Ferraro MC, Bagg MK, McAuley JH. (2019). RADICAL: Systematic Review of Anti-Depressant Medicines if Considered Analgesics for Low Back Pain (protocol). Open Science Framework, available at: https://osf.io/cedm3

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Medicines for Back Pain

Patient Education to PREVENT Chronic Low Back Pain

For people with a new low back pain episode. We are testing early intervention to reduce the risk of developing chronic low back pain.

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Patient Education to PREVENT Chronic Low Back Pain

SLEEPain

For people with back pain who are having trouble with their sleep. We are testing whether a simple sleep tablet will help people reduce their pain and sleep better.

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SLEEPain

RESEARCH TEAM