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Changes in intervertebral disk dimensions after a loading task and the relationship with stature change measurements

Lewis, Sandra E. and Fowler, Neil E. (2009) Changes in intervertebral disk dimensions after a loading task and the relationship with stature change measurements. Archives of physical medicine and rehabilitation, 90 (10). pp. 1795-1799.

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Abstract

Objective To test the hypothesis that there would be a linear relationship between overall stature change determined by stadiometry and markers of lumbar disk height loss determined from magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Design The short-term loading response of the lumbar spine was evaluated with both stadiometry and MRI, using a within-subject repeated-measures design. Measures were obtained both before and after 15 minutes of walking wearing a weighted vest (20% of body mass). Stature loss measured on the stadiometer was compared with change in lumbar spine length assessed from the MRI images. Setting A university laboratory. Participants Participants (N=13; mean age ± SD, 28.5±5.2y; mean height ± SD, 1.76±0.10m; mean body mass ± SD, 76.6±14.9kg) were invited to take part in the investigation. The group was mixed (9 men, 4 women) and comprised people with no history of low back pain. Interventions Not applicable. Main Outcome Measures Lumbar spine length assessed via MRI and stature change measured via stadiometry. Results A significant height loss was observed over the complete lumbar spine (P<.05), and a significant correlation was found between the decrease in posterior spine length and stature loss (r=.61). Conclusions The results were supportive of the use of stadiometry as an indirect measure of changes in intervertebral disk height.

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