Are cervical physical outcome measures influenced by the presence of symptomatology?

Sterling, Michele, Jull, Gwendolen, Carlsson, Ylva and Crommert, Louise (2002) Are cervical physical outcome measures influenced by the presence of symptomatology?. Physiotherapy Research International, 7 3: 113-121. doi:10.1002/pri.248

Author Sterling, Michele
Jull, Gwendolen
Carlsson, Ylva
Crommert, Louise
Title Are cervical physical outcome measures influenced by the presence of symptomatology?
Journal name Physiotherapy Research International   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1358-2267
Publication date 2002
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1002/pri.248
Volume 7
Issue 3
Start page 113
End page 121
Total pages 9
Editor Cecily Partridge
Place of publication London
Publisher Wiley
Collection year 2002
Language eng
Subject C1
321024 Rehabilitation and Therapy - Occupational and Physical
730303 Occupational, speech and physiotherapy
Formatted abstract
Background and Purpose
Outcome measures must be repeatable over time to judge changes as a result of treatment. It is unknown whether the presence of neck pain can affect measurement reliability over a time period when some change could be expected as a result of an intervention. The present study investigated the reliability of two measures, active cervical range of movement (AROM) and pressure pain thresholds (PPTs), in symptomatic and asymptomatic subjects.

A repeated-measures study design with one week between testing sessions was used. Nineteen healthy asymptomatic subjects and 19 subjects with chronic neck pain participated in the study. The neck movements measured were: flexion, extension, right and left lateral flexion, and axial rotation. PPTs were measured over six bilateral sites, both local and remote to the cervical spine.

The between-week intra-class correlation coefficients (ICCs2,1) for AROM ranged from 0.67 to 0.93 (asymptomatic group) and from 0.64 to 0.88 (chronic neck pain group). Standard error of measurement (SEM) was similar in both groups, from 2.66° to 5.59° (asymptomatic group) and from 2.36° to 6.72° (chronic neck pain group). ICCs2,1 for PPTs ranged from 0.70 to 0.91 (asymptomatic group) and from 0.69 to 0.92 (chronic neck pain group). SEM ranged from 11.14 to 87.71 kPa (asymptomatic group) and from 14.25 to 102.95 kPa (chronic neck pain group).

The findings of moderate to very high between-week reliability of measures of AROM and PPTs in both asymptomatic and chronic neck pain subjects suggest the presence of symptomatology does not adversely affect reliability of these measures. The results support the use of these measures for monitoring change in chronic neck pain conditions. Copyright © 2002 Whurr Publishers Ltd.
Keyword cervical spine
pressure pain thresholds
range of movement
Q-Index Code C1

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Excellence in Research Australia (ERA) - Collection
School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences Publications
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Created: Tue, 14 Aug 2007, 17:37:33 EST