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Musculoskelet Sci Pract. 2019 Feb;39:45-50. doi: 10.1016/j.msksp.2018.11.010. Epub 2018 Nov 20.

Altered trunk head co-ordination in those with persistent neck pain.

Author information

1
The Neck Pain and Whiplash Research Unit, Division of Physiotherapy, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, 4072, Australia. Electronic address: j.treleaven@uq.edu.au.
2
The Neck Pain and Whiplash Research Unit, Division of Physiotherapy, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, 4072, Australia.
3
Dept. of Radiation Sciences, Radiation Physics and Biomedical Engineering, Umeå University, Umeå, Sweden.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Decreased neck motion and sensorimotor deficits have been identified in those with neck pain. It is thought that these might be related to altered reflex mechanisms between the neck, eyes and the vestibular system. Trunk, head co-ordination might also be altered in neck pain.

OBJECTIVES:

This study investigated trunk head co-ordination ability in subjects with neck pain compared to asymptomatic controls.

METHOD:

Twenty-four subjects with persistent neck pain and twenty-six age and gender matched healthy controls performed 3 trials of 3 trunk movements whilst trying to keep the head still - (1) alternate trunk movement to the left and right (2) trunk movement to the left (3) trunk movement to the right. Wireless motion sensors positioned over the sternum and the forehead measured trunk and head range and velocity of motion.

ANALYSIS:

ANOVA was used to compare trunk and head range and velocity of motion during the 3 tasks.

RESULTS:

Neck pain subjects had significantly less trunk movement (p < 0.05) and velocity (p=<0.02) as well as significantly increased head movement (p=<0.03) during most tasks compared to control subjects.

DISCUSSION:

The results of the study suggest that neck pain subjects have difficulty moving their trunk independently of their head. They are less able to keep the head still while moving the trunk and perform the tasks more slowly. These findings might be related to altered reflex activity of the cervico-collic reflex and sensorimotor control. Further research is required.

KEYWORDS:

Cervico-collic reflex; Head motion; Neck pain; Sensorimotor; Trunk

PMID:
30476827
DOI:
10.1016/j.msksp.2018.11.010
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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