Comparison of proprioceptive acuity of the cervical spine in healthy adults and adults with chronic non-specific low back pain: A cross-sectional study.PLoS One. 2019; 14(1):e0209818.Plos
It has been suggested that patients with chronic non-specific low back pain (CNSLBP) perform poorly in postural tasks when compared to healthy individuals. Despite its importance in posture and alignment of the trunk in relation to the head, neck proprioception has not been examined in patients with low back pain. The purpose of this study was to compare neck proprioception in patients with CNSLBP with healthy individuals.
Cervical joint reposition error was measured five times consecutively in the neutral head position, 30° and 60° left and right head rotation. The main outcome measure was the mean cervical joint repositioning error of the head.
Forty-six participants with (n = 24, 54 ± 16yrs SD, 14 females) and without (n = 22, 36 ± 13yrs SD, 13 females) CNSLBP were included in the study. Comparison of mean cervical joint repositioning error between patients and healthy controls showed no statistically significant group difference in any of the applied positions. The range of deviation in CNSLBP patients was between 1.57° and 3.27° compared to 1.46° to 2.26° in healthy controls. An overshooting tendency for both groups was found in the neutral head position.
The ability to accurately position the head does not seem to be impaired in patients with CNSLBP. This may suggest that sensorimotor control is affected on other levels of the movement system and future research should focus on methods to identify the source of these aberrations.