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Eur Spine J. 2017 Feb;26(2):510-517. doi: 10.1007/s00586-016-4758-z. Epub 2016 Sep 6.

Diagnostic value of trunk flexion-extension testing in old chronic low back pain patients.

Author information

1
Karl-Landsteiner-Institute for outpatient rehabilitation Research, Vienna, Austria. kienbacher@rehabzentrum.at.
2
Karl-Landsteiner-Institute for outpatient rehabilitation Research, Vienna, Austria.
3
Technical School of Engineering, Vienna, Austria.
4
Department of Psychology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, USA.
5
Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

Dynamic trunk flexion-extension testing has been proven to objectively diagnose low back pain in persons under the age of 60 years but older persons have difficulty complying with standardized movement velocity.

METHODS:

190 patients and 71 matched healthy volunteers (18-90 years of age) performed modified testing by holding static positions at standing, half, and full trunk flexion.

RESULTS:

Lumbar extensor muscle activity in isometric positions was significantly higher in patients with higher activity in the oldest (60-90 years) and the middle-aged (40-59 years) but not in the youngest (18-39 years) subgroups compared to normal. There were no differences in gross trunk range of motion, half flexion relaxation ratio, proprioception, muscle activity differences between positions, and fear-avoidance behavior. The diagnostic accuracy as expressed by the area under the curve was fair (0.74).

CONCLUSIONS:

Lumbar extensor muscle activity demonstrated moderate to good diagnostic value in old patients.

KEYWORDS:

Chronic back pain; Electromyography; Healthy volunteers; Kinematics; Proprioception

PMID:
27600250
DOI:
10.1007/s00586-016-4758-z
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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