Objective: The main objective of this report is to present an innovative research tool that will provide the opportunity to study fundamental aspects of the spinal manipulation dose-physiological response relation in humans.
Methods: A servo-controlled linear actuator motor was developed to simulate spinal manipulative therapy. Coefficient of multiple correlations was calculated to assess the degree of similarity between each measured force curves, whereas precision was obtained by comparing resulting peak force and time-to-peak force to the target curves.
Results: The coefficient of multiple correlations calculations showed that repeatability was very high with all correlation values over 0.98. Precision was also very high with average differences in peak force and time-to-peak force of less than 3 N and less than 5 milliseconds.
Conclusion: The tool was designed to optimize precision, repeatability, and safety in the delivery of force to the spine in humans. It offers a unique opportunity to study dose-response relationship for several spinal manipulation parameters such as peak force, time-to-peak force, and preload.
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