Comparison of lumbar range of movement and lumbar lordosis in back pain patients and matched controls
Joseph K.-F. Ng , Carolyn A. Richardson , Vaughan Kippers , Mohamad Parnianpour
Inconclusive findings have been shown in previous studies comparing lumbar range of movement (LROM) and lumbar lordosis between back pain patients and healthy subjects. In these studies, confounding variables such as age, gender, height, obesity, and pain level were usually not well controlled. The present study aimed to compare LROM and lumbar lordosis between back pain patients and matched controls. Fifteen male back pain patients and 15 age-, height-, obesity-, and physical activity-matched male controls were investigated. To minimize the effect of pain on the measurements, only patients with minimal or no pain at the time of testing were included in the study. Inclinometer technique was used for the evaluation of LROM in flexion, extension and lateral flexion as well as lumbar lordosis. A lumbar rotameter was used for measuring axial rotation. Pelvic motion was limited by a pelvic restraint device during LROM measurements. Results showed that there were no significant differences between the back pain and control groups in flexion, extension, lateral flexion and axial rotation LROM and also in lumbar lordosis. This may indicate that when a back pain patient is not in pain, LROM and lumbar lordosis may not be the measures that distinguish between back pain patients and subjects without back pain.
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