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1.  Improvements in tissue blood flow and lumbopelvic stability after lumbopelvic core stabilization training in patients with chronic non-specific low back pain 
[Purpose] This study investigated the effects of lumbopelvic stabilization training on tissue blood flow changes in the lumbopelvic region and lumbopelvic stability compared to placebo treatment and controlled intervention among patients with chronic non-specific low back pain. [Subjects and Methods] A total of 25 participants (7 males, 18 females; mean age, 33.3 ± 14.4 years) participated in this within-subject, repeated-measures, double-blind, placebo-controlled comparison trial. The participants randomly underwent three types of interventions that included lumbopelvic stabilization training, placebo treatment, and controlled intervention with 48 hours between sessions. Lumbopelvic stability and tissue blood flow were measured using a pressure biofeedback device and a laser Doppler flow meter before and after the interventions. [Results] The repeated-measures analysis of variance results demonstrated a significant increase in tissue blood flow over the lumbopelvic region tissues for post- versus pre-lumbopelvic stabilization training and compared to placebo and control interventions. A significant increase in lumbopelvic stability before and after lumbopelvic stabilization training was noted, as well as upon comparison to placebo and control interventions. [Conclusion] The current study supports an increase in tissue blood flow in the lumbopelvic region and improved lumbopelvic stability after core training among patients with chronic non-specific low back pain.
PMCID: PMC4793024  PMID: 27064327
Low back pain; Tissue blood flow; Lumbopelvic stability training
2.  Altered Pain Sensitivity in Elderly Women with Chronic Neck Pain 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(6):e0128946.
Age-related changes occur in both the peripheral and central nervous system, yet little is known about the influence of chronic pain on pain sensitivity in older persons. The aim of this study was to investigate pain sensitivity in elders with chronic neck pain compared to healthy elders.
Thirty elderly women with chronic neck pain and 30 controls were recruited. Measures of pain sensitivity included pressure pain thresholds, heat/cold pain thresholds and suprathreshold heat pain responses. The pain measures were assessed over the cervical spine and at a remote site, the tibialis anterior muscle.
Elders with chronic neck pain had lower pressure pain threshold over the articular pillar of C5-C6 and decreased cold pain thresholds over the cervical spine and tibialis anterior muscle when compared with controls (p < 0.05). There were no between group differences in heat pain thresholds and suprathreshold heat pain responses (p > 0.05).
The presence of pain hypersensitivity in elderly women with chronic neck pain appears to be dependent on types of painful stimuli. This may reflect changes in the peripheral and central nervous system with age.
PMCID: PMC4454693  PMID: 26039149
3.  Acute effects of single and multiple level thoracic manipulations on chronic mechanical neck pain: a randomized controlled trial 
Thoracic spine manipulation has become a popular alternative to local cervical manipulative therapy for mechanical neck pain. This study investigated the acute effects of single-level and multiple-level thoracic manipulations on chronic mechanical neck pain (CMNP).
Forty-eight patients with CMNP were randomly allocated to single-level thoracic manipulation (STM) at T6–T7 or multiple-level thoracic manipulation (MTM), or to a control group (prone lying). Cervical range of motion (CROM), visual analog scale (VAS), and the Thai version of the Neck Disability Index (NDI-TH) scores were measured at baseline, and at 24-hour and at 1-week follow-up.
At 24-hour and 1-week follow-up, neck disability and pain levels were significantly (P<0.05) improved in the STM and MTM groups compared with the control group. CROM in flexion and left lateral flexion were increased significantly (P<0.05) in the STM group when compared with the control group at 1-week follow-up. The CROM in right rotation was increased significantly after MTM compared to the control group (P<0.05) at 24-hour follow-up. There were no statistically significant differences in neck disability, pain level at rest, and CROM between the STM and MTM groups.
These results suggest that both single-level and multiple-level thoracic manipulation improve neck disability, pain levels, and CROM at 24-hour and 1-week follow-up in patients with CMNP.
PMCID: PMC4296956  PMID: 25624764
thoracic manipulation; neck disability; pain level; neck pain
4.  Intrarater Reliability of Pain Intensity, Tissue Blood Flow, Thermal Pain Threshold, Pressure Pain Threshold and Lumbo-Pelvic Stability Tests in Subjects with Low Back Pain 
This preliminary study aimed to determine the intrarater reliability of the quantitative tests for the study of non-specific low back pain.
Test-retest reliability of the measurements of ratio data was determined by an intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC), standard error of measurements (SEMs), coefficient of variation (CV), and one-way repeated measures ANOVA using the values collected from 13 young individuals (25.8 ± 6.2 years) with chronic non-specific low back pain on two occasions separated by 2 days. Percent agreement of the ordinal data was also determined by Cohen's Kappa statistics (kappa). The measures consisted of tissue blood flow (BF), average pain visual analog scales (VAS), pressure pain threshold (PPT), cold pain threshold (CPT), heat pain threshold (HPT) and lumbo-pelvic stability test (LPST). An acceptable reliability was determined as the ICC values of greater than 0.85, SEMs less than 5%, CV less than 15%, the kappa scores of greater than 80% and no evidence of systematic error (ANOVA, P>0.05).
ICC of all measures in the lumbo-sacral area were greater than 0.87. The kappa was also greater than 83%. Most measures demonstrated a minimal error of measurements and less potential of systemic error in nature. Only the SEMs and the CV of the CPT exceeded the acceptable level.
It is concluded that most of the quantitative measurements are reliable for the study of non-specific low back pain, however the CPT should be applied with care as it has a great variation among individuals and potential of measurement error.
PMCID: PMC3307961  PMID: 22461960
Reliability; Low back pain; Outcome measures; Lumbo-pelvic stability; Pain

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