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J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2008 Apr;38(4):169-74. doi: 10.2519/jospt.2008.2723. Epub 2007 Nov 21.

Measurement of pectoralis minor muscle length: validation and clinical application.

Author information

1
Physical Therapy Division, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210-1234, USA. borstad.1@osu.edu

Abstract

STUDY DESIGN:

Clinical measurement validity study.

OBJECTIVES:

To validate the measurement of the pectoralis minor muscle length using palpable landmarks and to explore the accuracy of the measurement using a clinical instrument.

BACKGROUND:

The pectoralis minor is believed to adaptively shorten. Individuals with a relatively short pectoralis minor demonstrate scapular kinematic alterations that have been associated with shoulder impingement.

METHODS AND MEASURES:

A 3-dimensional electromagnetic motion capture system was used to calculate the length of the pectoralis minor in 11 cadavers, using 2 measurement techniques. In addition, a measurement with the electromagnetic system using palpable landmarks was compared to a measurement with both a caliper and tape measure in vivo.

RESULTS:

In cadavers, a measurement using palpable landmarks was determined to be a valid measure of the actual muscle length visualized and measured following dissection. There was a high intraclass correlation coefficient and a small root-mean-square error between these 2 measures. High intraclass correlation coefficients were also calculated in vivo when measurements with the clinical instruments were compared with the electromagnetic device measures.

CONCLUSION:

A measurement using palpable landmarks for pectoralis minor length validly represents the muscle length in cadavers. A caliper or tape measure may be used clinically with high accuracy and may help clinicians determine the need for and the effectiveness of interventions for lengthening this muscle.

PMID:
18434665
DOI:
10.2519/jospt.2008.2723
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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