METHODS: Seventeen subjects underwent a 30-minute acclimatizing period in a controlled environment room. Thermal recordings were executed at the levels of C4 and L4. Fifteen recordings per segment were acquired in an alternating mode that always started at L4. Each subject was required to participate on 5 occasions. The exclusion criteria for the subjects included the following: no inflammatory disease or fever, no consumption of beverages containing caffeine, and no participation in physical activity 2 hours before the recording session; female subjects could not be menstruating on a day of recording.
RESULTS: A total of 2550 recordings for the cervical area and the lumbar area was recorded. Strong significant correlations were found for the left (r = .77) and right (r = .71) lumbar sections (P < .0001) whereas weaker significant correlations were observed for the left (r = .56) and right (r = .63) cervical areas (P < .0001). The limits of agreement (Bland-Altman) showed good relationships but poor interchangeability.
CONCLUSIONS: In this study, the infrared cameras showed that they were valid tools in a controlled environment; however, the technique for the cervical measurements needs to be reassessed.
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