Muscle dysfunction in cervical spine pain: Implications for assessment and management

O'Leary, S., Falla, D., Elliott, J. M. and Jull, G. (2009) Muscle dysfunction in cervical spine pain: Implications for assessment and management. The Journal of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy, 39 5: 324-333. doi:10.2519/jospt.2009.2872

Author O'Leary, S.
Falla, D.
Elliott, J. M.
Jull, G.
Title Muscle dysfunction in cervical spine pain: Implications for assessment and management
Journal name The Journal of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0190-6011
Publication date 2009-05-01
Year available 2009
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.2519/jospt.2009.2872
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 39
Issue 5
Start page 324
End page 333
Total pages 10
Editor Guy G. Simoneau
Place of publication Alexandria, Va., United States of America
Publisher American Physical Therapy Association, Orthopedic Section (JOSPT)
Language eng
Subject 110317 Physiotherapy
920201 Allied Health Therapies (excl. Mental Health Services)
Abstract There is irrefutable evidence of an association between mechanical neck pain (MNP) and dysfunction of the muscles of the cervical spine. A myriad of impairments have been demonstrated that include changes in the physical structure (cross-sectional area, fatty infiltration, fiber type), as well as changes in behavior (timing and activation level), of the cervical muscles. Such changes suggest an impaired capacity of the cervical muscles to generate, sustain, and maintain precision of the required levels of torque needed for optimal function. In the context of physical support, these changes potentially have deleterious consequences for the cervical region, which relies heavily on its muscles for mechanical stability. While interventions focused on the retraining of cervical muscle function have shown favorable responses in alleviating MNP, the development of best practice strategies for the assessment and management of cervical muscle dysfunction is still a work in progress. One obstacle in researching the efficacy of cervical muscle training is that, as yet, we do not possess the capacity to optimally measure and classify those patients most likely to respond to different methods of training that would enrich clinical practice. While gains in this area are emerging, the ability of a clinician to best identify the need and implement the most appropriate method of training cervical muscle function is still largely dependent on a comprehensive examination of the patient that considers all aspects of the patient's disorder and functional requirements. © Copyright 2009 Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy
Keyword Mechanical neck pain
Therapeutic exercise
Chronic neck pain
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

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Created: Thu, 03 Sep 2009, 18:09:25 EST by Mr Andrew Martlew on behalf of School of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences