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Investigating the contribution of the upper and lower lumbar spine, relative to hip motion, in everyday tasks

Alqhtani, Raee S., Jones, Michael David ORCID:, Theobald, Peter ORCID: and Williams, Jonathan M. 2016. Investigating the contribution of the upper and lower lumbar spine, relative to hip motion, in everyday tasks. Manual Therapy 21 , pp. 268-273. 10.1016/j.math.2015.09.014

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Background It is commonplace for clinicians to measure range of motion (ROM) in the assessment of the lumbar spine. Traditional single ‘joint’ models afford measuring only a limited number of regions along the spine and may, therefore, over-simplify the description of movement. It remains to be determined if additional, useful information can be gleaned by considering the traditional ‘lumbar region’ as two regions. Objective The aim of this study was to determine whether modelling the lumbar spine as two separate regions (i.e. upper and lower), yields a different understanding of spinal movement relative to hip motion, than a traditional single-joint model. This study is unique in adopting this approach to evaluate a range of everyday tasks. Method Lumbar spine motion was measured both by being considered as a whole region (S1 to T12), and where the lumbar spine was modelled as two regions (the upper (L3-T12) and lower (S1-L3)). Results A significant difference was evident between the relative contribution from the lower and upper spine across all movements, with the lower lumbar spine consistently contributing on average 63% of the total ROM. A significant difference was also evident between the whole lumbar spine-hip ratio, and the lower lumbar spine-hip ratio, for the movement of lifting only. The lower lumbar spine achieved greater velocity for all tasks, when compared to the upper lumbar spine. Conclusion This study has consistently demonstrated differences in the contribution of the upper and lower spinal regions across a range of everyday tasks; hence, it would appear that greater focus should be given to performing more detailed assessments to fully appreciate spinal movement.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Engineering
Subjects: T Technology > TJ Mechanical engineering and machinery
Uncontrolled Keywords: Lumbar spine; Upper and lower lumbar spine; Lumbar-hip movement; Sectioned approach; Ratio; Velocity
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 1356-689X
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Date of Acceptance: 23 September 2015
Last Modified: 05 May 2023 00:36

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