Science & Equine

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Written by STABLE fysio
Posted in Manual therapy

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Effect of mobilization and manipulation on thoracolumbar

Spinal manipulative therapy (SMT) involves the application of manual applied forces with the intent of reducing pain and improving joint mobility. Vertical displacement progressively increases in caudal direction in the spine. The maximum applied force was measured at L5-6. SMT improvises force and displacement at T14-15 and L1-2.

Reduced flexion-extension and asymmetric lateral binding have been reported in horses with naturally occurring back problems. Objective methods are needed for functional assessment of the vertebral column and evaluation of the therapeutics efficacy of rehabilitative approaches used to treat back problems.

The objective of this study were to determine differences in vertical mobility and stiffness in the thoracolumbar spine in standing horses and access the effects of induced pain and SMT in a randomized crossover study. Ten horses with no current history of acute back problems or lameness were used in this study. Horses were allocated to control and treatment intervention, separated with a 7 day washout period. Back pain was induced by fixation pins (P) at T17-18 and L3-4. Vertebral displacement was measured by a calibrated cable extensometer simultaneously with a calibrated pressure mat to measure applied forces at file levels. Treadmill exercise before and after was to access spinal kinematics. A high-force, high velocity low amplitude dorsal to ventral trust (SMT) was applied at T14-15, L1-2 and L5-6

Outcome measurements were; displacement, force, stiffness and frequency. P increased stiffness in the control group at  L1-2 and L5-6. The initial treadmill locomotion induced significant reductions of displacement and force at these regions in both group. SMT increases the displacement and the force at T14-15 and L1-2. There were reductions in displacement after the final treadmill exercise in T14-15 and L1-2. P caused limited immediate changes, long term evaluation can provide a better assessment of inducing back pain.

> Haussler, et al., American Journal of Veterinary Research, May 2007, Vol. 68, No. 5 , Pages 508-516. Click here for the Pubmed summary


Image by: Haussler et al, 2006