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Upper Extremity Proprioception in Idiopathic Scoliosis

COOK, STEPHEN, D.; HARDING, AMANDA, F.; BURKE, STEPHEN, W.; WHITECLOUD, THOMAS, S.; BARRACK, ROBERT, L.; LEINHARDT, TED, M.

Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research: December 1986 - Volume 213 - Issue - p 118–124
SECTION II: GENERAL ORTHOPAEDICS: PDF Only
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Twenty-three patients with idiopathic scoliosis were tested for upper extremity proprioceptive function. All subjects had documented progression of deformity, with an average curvature of 34°. The average ages for scoliotics and 18 control subjects were 16.1 and 20.8 years, respectively. Controls had no spinal deformity and underwent identical test procedures. The test results showed that scoliotic subjects had significant asymmetry between right and left limbs in their threshold for detection of joint motion (p ≤ 0.005) and in their ability to reproduce angles to which their elbow joint had been previously positioned (p ≤ 0.025). Slight asymmetry also was observed in the reproduction tests of the control group (p ≤ 0.013); however, there was no significant asymmetry seen in this group for the threshold test. Performance, of bilateral limbs was designated good and bad for both groups; the limb that performed better in proprioceptive function was designated good limb. Analysis of data showed that the scoliotics' good and bad limbs performed inferiorly in both threshold and angle reproduction tests when compared with normal controls. The results of this study imply, but do not localize, a neurologic deficit in scoliotic patients.

Professor, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Tulane University School of Medicine, New Orleans, Louisiana; and Veterans Administration Medical Center, Rehabilitative Research and Development, New Orleans, Louisiana.

Research Associate, Veterans Administration Medical Center, Rehabilitative Research and Development, New Orleans, Louisiana.

Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Tulane University School of Medicine, New Orleans, Louisiana.

Associate Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Tulane University School of Medicine, New Orleans, Louisiana.

Chief Resident, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Tulane University School of Medicine, New Orleans, Louisiana.

Research Associate, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Tulane University School of Medicine, New Orleans, Louisiana.

© Lippincott-Raven Publishers.