TYPICAL TREATMENT PROGRESSION — THE DYSFUNCTION SYNDROME

Day one

  • Assessment and conclusion/diagnosis.
  • Explanation of the cause of dysfunction and the treatment approach.
  • Postural correction and instructions, especially regarding sitting; demonstrate the use of a lumbar support.
  • Commence with exercises to recover function — that is, extension in lying, flexion in lying, or side gliding in standing, whatever procedure is indicated.
  • Emphasise the need to experience some discomfort during the exercises, and the importance of frequent exercising during the day.
  • If flexion in lying is recommended, we must warn to stop exercising if the symptoms quickly worsen. We may have overlooked derangement, or commenced the procedure too early following recent derangement.
  • Always follow flexion exercises with some extension.
READ:   Spine Health. PROCEDURE 13 — FLEXION IN LYING

Day two

  • Confirm diagnosis.
  • Check postural correction.
  • Completely repeat’postural correction and instructions.
  • Check exercises. If improving nothing should be changed.
  • If not improving, ensure that exercises are performed far enough into end range, maintained long enough during the last three repetitions, and performed often enough during the day.
  • Warn for ‘new pains’.

Day three

  • Check posture and exercises.
  • If no improvement, commence mobilisation procedures. Several mobilisation treatments may be required.
  • Patient must continue the self-treatment exercises as directed.

Day four and five

  • Check exercises and progress.
  • If in treatment for flexion dysfunction no further progress is possible with flexion in lying, change to flexion in standing, possibly flexion in step standing.
  • Take necessary precautions when starting flexion in standing.
  • Ensure that patient has ‘new pains’.
READ:   The Dysfunction Syndrome

Further treatments

  • I prefer to see patients in this category three or four days in succession. If progress is adequate and the patient understands the self-treatment
    programme, treatment may change to alternate days and later to twice per week if required.
  • It usually takes ten to twelve treatments, spread over four to six weeks, to successfully treat dysfunction.
  • If towards the middle of the treatment period the patient ceases to improve and especially if the remaining pain is unilateral, then a rotation manipulation may be required. This may have to be repeated two or three times and should be combined with mobilising and exercising procedures already being applied.
  • Before discharge prophylaxis must be discussed in detail.
READ:   Deformities of the spine: Lordosis, Kyphosis, and Scoliosis
The Derangement Syndrome Of all mechanical low back problems that are encountered in general medical practise, mechanical derangement of the intervertebral disc is potentially the most disabling. It is my belief that in the lumbar spine, if in no other area, disturbance of the intervertebral disc mechanism is responsible for the production of symptoms in as many as ninety-five percent of our patients. Twenty-five years of clinical observation and treatment of lumbar conditions have convinced me that certain phenomena and the various movements which affect them, can occur only because of the hydrostatic properties invested in the intervertebral disc. For thirty years Cyriax has attributed lumbar pain to internal derangement of the intervertebral disc mechanism. He has outlined the cause of lumbago, and proposed that pain of a slow onset is likely to be produced by a nuclear protrusion while that of a sudden onset is caused by a displaced annular fragment. Although at present we are unable to prove either of ...
Spine Health. PROCEDURE 2 — LYING PRONE IN EXTENSION The patient, already lying prone, places the elbows under the shoulders and raises the top half of his body so that he comes to lean on elbows and forearms while pelvis and thighs remain on the couch. In this position the lumbar lordosis is automatically increased. Emphasis must be placed on allowing the low back to sag and the lordosis to increase. Fig. Lying prone in extension. Effects: Procedure 2 is a progression of procedure 1 and merely enhances its effects by increasing extension. Again, in derangement some time must be allowed to affect the contents of the disc and, if possible patients should remain in this position for five to ten minutes. In more acute patients sustained extension may not be well tolerated due to pain, and initially we must rely on the use of intermittent extension.
TREATMENT OF FLEXION DYSFUNCTION Loss of flexion is the second most common movement loss in the lumbar spine. It manifests itself in several ways, which interfere with either the amount of available flexion or the pathway taken to achieve flexion. This type of dysfunction is commonly seen in patients with an accentuated lordosis. Patients with significant flexion dysfunction are usually unable to sit slouched with a convex lumbar spine. When giving postural instructions to these patients, we must explain that once sitting relaxed they place the lumbar spine on full stretch much sooner than patients with a normal flexion excursion. Fig. Recovery of loss offlexion, using the procedure of flexion in standing. Recovery of pure flexion loss To regain flexion we must, just as in the case of extension dysfunction, explain to the patient the purpose of performing exercises. Again, we must stress the necessity of causing a moderate degree of discomfort or pain with the exercises. Pain produced by stretching of contra...
Spine Health. PROCEDURE 15 — FLEXION IN STEP STANDING In this procedure the patient stands on one leg while the other leg rests with the foot on a stool so that hip and knee are about ninety degrees flexed. Keeping the weight bearing leg straight the patient draws himself into a flexed position, firmly approximating the shoulder and the already raised knee (both being on the same side). If possible the shoulder should be moved even lower than the knee. The patient may apply further pressure by pulling on the ankle of the raised foot. The pressure is then released and the patient returns to the upright position. The sequence is repeated about six to ten times. It is important that the patient returns to neutral standing and restores the lordosis in between each movement. Fig. Flexion in step standing. Effects: This procedure causes an asymmetrical flexion stress on the affected segments. It is applied when there is a deviation in flexion, which may occur in dysfunction as well as derangement. Both in dysfunction and derangement th...
Kyphosis: Causes, Symptoms and Diagnosis What Causes Kyphosis? Kyphosis, also known as roundback or hunchback, is a condition in which the spine in the upper back has an excessive curvature. The upper back, or thoracic region of the spine, is supposed to have a slight natural curve. The spine naturally curves in the neck, upper back, and lower back to help absorb shock and support the weight of the head. Kyphosis occurs when this natural arch is larger than normal. If you have kyphosis, you may have a visible hump on your upper back. From the side, your upper back may be noticeably rounded or protruding. In addition, people with hunchback appear to be slouching and have noticeable rounding of the shoulders. Kyphosis can lead to excess pressure on the spine, causing pain. It may also cause breathing difficulties due to pressure put on the lungs. Kyphosis in elderly women is known as dowager’s hump. Common causes of kyphosis Kyphosis can affect people of any age. It rarely occurs in newborns because it’s usually caused...