1992 Volume 17, Number 68
Thomas R. Highland, MD, Thomas E. Dreisinger, PhD, Laura L. Vie, BEd, Garth S. Russell, MD
There have been no reports in the literature objectively measuring changes in strength and range of motion in patients with non-spinal-cord injuries of the cervical spine. Ninety patients participated in an 8-week training study. Diagnostic groups included patients with the following: degenerative disc (n = 6), herniated disc (n = 14), and cervical strain (n = 70). Full-range isometric strength tests were performed at eight equidistant positions in a device that constrained all motion with the exception of cervical flexion and extension. Post tests were performed following training. Significant gains were seen in strength as well as range of motion. Perceived pain was significantly reduced. This kind of testing can potentially provide the clinician with objective findings to direct patient management more adequately.
Study Outcomes & Clinical Relevance: This study was one of the first studies to objectively measure changes in strength and range of motion in patients with non-spinal cord injuries of the cervical spine. Significant gains were seen in strength as well as range of motion and perceived pain was significantly reduced. This study showed that testing and training of the isolated cervical spine is a safe and viable method of clinical assessment and treatment of a variety of cervical spine disorders.