Shear wave elastography investigation of multifidus stiffness in individuals with low back pain

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Authors

External organisations

  • Centre of Precision Rehabilitation for Spinal Pain (CPR Spine), School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences, College of Life and Environmental Sciences, University of Birmingham, Birmingham, United Kingdom.
  • Centre of Precision Rehabilitation for Spinal Pain (CPR Spine), School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences, College of Life and Environmental Sciences, University of Birmingham, UK. Electronic address: n.heneghan@bham.ac.uk.

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to investigate differences in passive muscular stiffness between the superficial multifidus (SM) and deep multifidus (DM), and to compare their passive and active stiffness in individuals with low back pain (LBP) and asymptomatic individuals. Fifteen LBP individuals and 15 asymptomatic individuals were recruited. Passive stiffness of the SM and DM was measured bilaterally using shear wave elastography (SWE) with participants lying prone. Active stiffness was measured for the SM during trunk extension, and the contraction ratio was calculated. DM displayed higher passive muscular stiffness than SM in both the asymptomatic and LBP groups (14.41 ± 2.62 and 15.40 ± 2.77 kPa respectively; p < 0.001). Individuals with LBP exhibited higher passive muscular stiffness of SM (LBP: 10.15 ± 4.21, asymptomatic: 6.84 ± 1.69 kPa; p < 0.005) and a lower contraction ratio (LBP: 1.54 ± 0.47, asymptomatic: 2.65 ± 1.36 kPa; p < 0.003) compared to the asymptomatic group. The findings support a differentiation in passive muscular stiffness between SM and DM and provide evidence for an alteration in muscular stiffness at rest in individuals with LBP. The lower increase of muscular stiffness with contraction observed for those with LBP may reflect a deficit in activation of the multifidus.

Bibliographic note

Copyright © 2019 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-24
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of electromyography and kinesiology : official journal of the International Society of Electrophysiological Kinesiology
Volume47
Early online date3 May 2019
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2019

Keywords

  • Low back pain, Muscular stiffness, Lumbar multifidus, Shear wave elastography