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Nurs Health Sci. 2018 Jun;20(2):224-230. doi: 10.1111/nhs.12406. Epub 2018 Feb 8.

Respiratory characteristics of individuals with non-specific low back pain: A cross-sectional study.

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Department of Physical Therapy, Chiang Mai University, Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Centre of Physiotherapy, Universiti Teknologi MARA Selangor, Bandar Puncak Alam, Puncak Alam, Malaysia.
Centre of Medical Imaging, Universiti Teknologi MARA Selangor, Bandar Puncak Alam, Puncak Alam, Malaysia.


Non-specific low back pain (NS-LBP) is known to cause respiratory dysfunction. In this study, we investigated alterations in breathing, respiratory strength and endurance, core stability, diaphragm mobility, and chest expansion among patients with NS-LBP and healthy individuals. The specific aim of the study was to correlate between respiratory function and other variables among NS-LBP patients. Thirty four patients with NS-LBP were matched with 34 healthy participants before undergoing total faulty breathing scale, spirometer, respiratory pressure meter, chest expansion, ultrasound, and pressure biofeedback measurements. There were signs of faulty breathing in the NS-LBP patients when compared to the healthy participants. Diaphragmatic mobility and respiratory muscle endurance were lower in the NS-LBP group. Chest expansion exhibited a significant decrease at the level of the fourth intercostal space in the NS-LBP group, but respiratory muscle strength and core stability were not significant between the two groups. Positive correlations were found to be fairly significant regarding respiratory muscle strength. The findings of this study indicated altered respiratory characteristics in the NS-LBP patients, and suggested that they would improve through respiratory exercises.


Malaysia; breathing; diaphragm; low back pain; respiratory muscle endurance; respiratory muscle strength

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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