Posturography; what is it and why?

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Normal Lumbar spine

The Lumbar spine has a weight bearing role, approximately 84% is carried by the vertebrae and discs and remaining 16%  by the facet joints and lamina. A common development over time is the degeneration or loss of height of the intervertebral disc (IVD) this can alter the weight bearing to posterior components being facet joints. This changes the way the small muscles of the spine send movement signals back to the brain decreasing accurate control and therefore stability as indicated by this study https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24284274  [Influences of posterior located centre of gravity on lumbar extension strength, balance and lumbar lordosis in chronic back pain.] This article suggests that a more posterior centre of gravity affects lumbar back strength, your balance because it alters sensory input to your brain and your posture.

The conclusion of the study: These findings suggest that chronic LBP patients with P-COG have some disadvantages to establish lumbar extension strength and static and dynamic balance, which require specific efforts to maintain a neutral position and to control posture. 

What is Posturography? Posturography is designed to measure your centre on gravity, centre of pressure, limits of stability, and if you are being tested on a more sophisticated model there is a much greater array of information. There is a difference between centre of gravity versus a centre of pressure and oddly you cannot know where either of these points are yourself. The centre of gravity is the actual point on the body whereas the centre of pressure is the point on the ground.  I currently use a Vestibtech CAPs http://www.vestibtech.com  and with this unit I am able to compare the input of the eyes, vestibular and proprioceptive systems to maintaining balance. There is a significant amount of research on posturography. You will need 3 to 5 tests that can be averaged to get a general idea of postural patterns.

By using a Vestibtech CAPS, I can assess your centre of pressure, limits of stability, how your eyes, vestibular and proprioception interact to maintain your balance. This equipment is necessary because you cannot assess centre of pressure without posturography.

To find out more for yourself,  call the practice and make an appointment.

 

 

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