To determine the stabilizing effect of external lumbar supports on the intervertebral mobility in the lower lumbar spine, seven patients with a posterolateral lumbosacral fusion without internal fixation were examined by roentgen stereophotogrammetric analysis in supine and erect positions 1 month after surgery, that is, after soft tissue healing but before fusion consolidation. Each patient was examined without lumber support, with a molded, rigid orthosis and with a canvas corset with molded, plastic posterior support. Neither of the two types of lumber support had any stabilizing effect on the sagittal, vertical, or transverse intervertebral translations. This study using roentgen streophotogrammetric analysis confirms that lumbosacral orthosis has effect by restricting gross motions of the trunk rather than intervertebral mobility in the lumbar spine.
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