Original Article: PDF OnlyHow Does Posture Affect Coupling in the Lumbar Spine?PANJABI, MANOHAR PhD, Dr Tech*; YAMAMOTO, ISAO MD†; OXLAND, THOMAS MASc*; CRISCO, J PhD*Author Information *From the Department of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, Yale University, School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut †From the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Hokkaido University, School of Medicine, Sapporo City, Hokkaido, Japan Spine: September 1989 - Volume 14 - Issue 9 - p 1002-1011 Buy Abstract There is evidence to suggest that abnormal coupling patterns In the lumbar spine may be an indicator of low-back problems. To quantify the normal coupling patterns, fresh cadaveric human lumbar spine specimens (L1-S1) were used. A pure axial torque or lateral bending moment of 10 N-m (in five equal steps) was applied to the specimen, in five spinal postures, and three-dimensional motions were measured at the five vertebral levels. The results indicated that the coupling patterns changed significantly with the intervertebral level. For example, in neutral posture, the left axial torque produced coupled lateral bending, which varied from ˜2° right lateral bending at L1-2, to ˜0° at L3-4, and to ˜2.5° left lateral bending at L5-S1. Additionally, there was coupled flexion of ˜1° to 2° at all levels. Application of left lateral bending moment resulted In ˜1.7° of coupled right axial rotation at all levels, except at L1-L2, where it as 0°. Additionally, there was coupled flexion of 0.7° to 2° at all levels. For example, at the L2-3 level, the left axial torque produced coupled right lateral bending that ranged from ˜0.5° at full extension to˜2.5° at full flexion. There was also accompanying coupled flexion of ˜0.4° to 1.7°. Application of left lateral bending moment at the L2-3 level produced axial rotation of ˜2.5°, which did not vary with the posture, while the other coupled motion varied from ˜1.7° flexion at full extension posture to ˜0.8° extension at full flexion posture. © Lippincott-Raven Publishers.