An MRI investigation into the function of the transversus abdominis muscle during "drawing-in" of the abdominal wall

Hides, Julie, Wilson, Stephen, Stanton, Warren, McMahon, Shaun, Keto, Heidi, McMahon, Katie, Bryant, Martina and Richardson, Carolyn (2006) An MRI investigation into the function of the transversus abdominis muscle during "drawing-in" of the abdominal wall. Spine, 31 6: E175-E178. doi:10.1097/01.brs.0000202740.86338.df

Author Hides, Julie
Wilson, Stephen
Stanton, Warren
McMahon, Shaun
Keto, Heidi
McMahon, Katie
Bryant, Martina
Richardson, Carolyn
Title An MRI investigation into the function of the transversus abdominis muscle during "drawing-in" of the abdominal wall
Journal name Spine   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0362-2436
Publication date 2006-03-15
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1097/01.brs.0000202740.86338.df
Volume 31
Issue 6
Start page E175
End page E178
Total pages 4
Editor J. Weinstein
Place of publication USA
Publisher Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
Collection year 2006
Language eng
Subject C1
321024 Rehabilitation and Therapy - Occupational and Physical
730303 Occupational, speech and physiotherapy
Abstract Study Design. An operator blinded dual modality trial of measurement of the abdominal muscles during drawing-in of the abdominal wall. Objectives. 1) To investigate, using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), the function of the transversus abdominis muscle bilaterally during a drawing-in of the abdominal wall. 2) To validate the use of real-time ultrasound imaging as a measure of the deep abdominal muscle during a drawing-in of the abdominal wall. Summary of Background Data. Previous research has implicated the deep abdominal muscle, transversus abdominis, in the support and protection of the spine and provided evidence that training this muscle is important in the rehabilitation of low back pain. One of the most important actions of the transversus abdominis is to draw-in the abdominal wall, and this action has been shown to stiffen the sacroiliac joints. It is hypothesized that in response to a draw in, the transversus abdominis muscle forms a deep musculofascial corset and that MRI could be used to view this corset and verify its mechanism of action on the lumbopelvic region. Methods. Thirteen healthy asymptomatic male elite cricket players aged 21.3 +/- 2.1 years were imaged using MRI and ultrasound imaging as they drew in their abdominal walls. Measurements of the thickness of the transversus abdominis and internal oblique muscles and the slide of the anterior abdominal fascia were measured using both MRI and ultrasound. Measurement of the whole abdominal cross-sectional area (CSA) was conducted using MRI. Results. Results of the MRI demonstrated that, as a result of draw-in, there was a significant increase in thickness of the transversus abdominis (P < 0.001) and the internal oblique muscles (P < 0.001). There was a significant decrease in the CSA of the trunk (P < 0.001). The mean slide ( +/- SD) of the anterior abdominal fascia was 1.54 +/- 0.38 cm for the left side and 1.48 +/- 0.35 cm for the right side. Ultrasound measurements of muscle thickness of both transversus abdominis and the internal oblique, as well as fascial slide, correlated with measures obtained using MRI (interclass correlations from 0.78 to 0.95). Conclusions. The MRI results demonstrated that during a drawing-in action, the transversus abdominis contracts bilaterally to form a musculofascial band that appears to tighten (like a corset) and most likely improves the stabilization of the lumbopelvic region. Real-time ultrasound imaging can also be used to measure changes in the transversus abdominis during the draw-in maneuver.
Keyword Clinical Neurology
Transversus Abdominis
Abdominal Muscles
Lumbopelvic Stabilization
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Real-time Ultrasound Imaging
Q-Index Code C1

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Created: Wed, 15 Aug 2007, 08:11:15 EST