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Reliability and agreement of isometric functional trunk and isolated lumbar strength assessment in healthy persons and persons with chronic nonspecific low back pain

Journal Contribution - Journal Article

OBJECTIVES: to assess intra/inter-operator reliability and agreement of maximum isometric abdominal and back muscle strength in a functional trunk and isolated lumbar protocol, using an isokinetic dynamometer, in healthy persons and persons with chronic nonspecific low back pain (CNSLBP).

DESIGN: Test-retest.

SETTING: Participants performed two assessments consisting of two protocols on the Biodex 3 system, evaluating maximum isometric back and abdominal strength in a functional trunk and isolated lumbar position. During the first assessment, each protocol was executed twice, supported by different operators.

PARTICIPANTS: Healthy persons (n = 20) and persons with CNSLBP (n = 20).

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Intraclass Correlation (ICC), Standard Error of Measurement (SEM and %SEM), and Minimal Detectable Change (MDC) of muscle strength outcomes and seat positioning characteristics were calculated.

RESULTS: Intra/inter reliability of muscle strength outcomes was excellent (ICC: 0.94-0.98), while seat positioning characteristics varied from low to high (ICC: 0-0.94). For muscle strength outcomes, %SEM ranged from 4.7 to 9.2% and MDC ranged from 14.3 to 29.8 Nm in trunk flexion and 39.1-68.5 Nm in trunk extension.

CONCLUSIONS: The Biodex 3 system can be used reliably to assess maximum isometric trunk muscle strength with the aforementioned protocols in healthy persons and persons with CNSLBP. All muscle strength outcomes showed comparable agreement (%SEM < 10%).

Journal: Physical Therapy in Sport
ISSN: 1466-853X
Volume: 38
Pages: 1-7
Number of pages: 7
Publication year:2019
Keywords:Adult, Chronic Disease, Female, Humans, Isometric Contraction/physiology, Low Back Pain/diagnosis, Lumbosacral Region/physiopathology, Male, Middle Aged, Muscle Strength/physiology, Muscle Strength Dynamometer, Muscle, Skeletal/physiopathology, Range of Motion, Articular, Reproducibility of Results, Torso/physiopathology, Paramedicine