One article on PainSci cites Sinaki 1984: Don’t Worry About Lifting Technique
PainSci notes on Sinaki 1984:
This 1984 experiment divided 60 osteoporotic women with back pain into four groups doing three different kind of exercise, plus a “lazy” control group that did nothing. One group did spinal flexion exercises, another did spinal extension exercises, and a third did a combination. On follow-up an average of 1.4 years later, 33% of the control group was worse off — more compression fractures had developed in that time. But in the flexion group? 89% were in worse condition! The combo-group roughly split the difference at 53% worse. The authors concluded: “Exercises that place flexion forces on the vertebrae… tend to cause an increased number of vertebral fractures in these patients.”
Oddly, this seems to be the only data of its kind.
original abstract †Abstracts here may not perfectly match originals, for a variety of technical and practical reasons. Some abstacts are truncated for my purposes here, if they are particularly long-winded and unhelpful. I occasionally add clarifying notes. And I make some minor corrections.
Fifty-nine women with postmenopausal spinal osteoporosis and back pain were instructed in a treatment program that included extension exercises (E) for 25 patients, flexion exercises (F) for 9, combined (E + F) exercises for 19, or no therapeutic exercises (N) for 6. Ages ranged from 49 to 60 years (mean, 56 years). Follow-up ranged from one to six years (means for the groups, 1.4 to 2 years). All patients had spine x-ray studies before treatment and at follow-up, at which time any further wedging and compression fractures were recorded. Additional fractures occurred as follows: group E, 16%; F, 89%; E + F, 53%; and N, 67%. In comparison with group E, the occurrence of wedging or compression fractures was significantly higher in group F (p less than 0.001) and group E + F (p less than 0.01). This study suggests that a significantly higher number of vertebral compression fractures occur in patients with postmenopausal osteoporosis who followed a flexion exercise program compared with those using extension exercises. Extension or isometric exercises seem to be more appropriate for patients with postmenopausal osteoporosis.
This page is part of the PainScience BIBLIOGRAPHY, which contains plain language summaries of thousands of scientific papers & others sources. It’s like a highly specialized blog. A few highlights:
- No long-term effects after a three-week open-label placebo treatment for chronic low back pain: a three-year follow-up of a randomized controlled trial. Kleine-Borgmann 2022 Pain.
- Exercise and education versus saline injections for knee osteoarthritis: a randomised controlled equivalence trial. Bandak 2022 Ann Rheum Dis.
- Association of Lumbar MRI Findings with Current and Future Back Pain in a Population-based Cohort Study. Kasch 2022 Spine (Phila Pa 1976).
- A double-blinded randomised controlled study of the value of sequential intravenous and oral magnesium therapy in patients with chronic low back pain with a neuropathic component. Yousef 2013 Anaesthesia.
- Is Neck Posture Subgroup in Late Adolescence a Risk Factor for Persistent Neck Pain in Young Adults? A Prospective Study. Richards 2021 Phys Ther.