Objective: The purpose of this study was to investigate morphologic differences using plain film radiographs in cervical intervertebral foramina (IVF) for the following positions: neutral; flexion combined with lateral flexion to the right, rotation to the left (FLFR-RL); and flexion combined with lateral flexion to the right, rotation to the right (FLFR-RR.)
Methods: Fifteen participants (male; age, 22-29 years) with no history of neck pain were recruited to participate in this study. Radiographs were taken with participants standing and their cervical spines positioned in neutral, in FLFR-RL, and in FLFR-RR. Foraminal height and width were measured at levels C5/6 and C6/7 by a radiologist. Differences in IVF sizes between positions were analyzed.
Results: The FLFR-RL position (flexion with contralateral rotation and lateral flexion) increased IVF height at C5/6 by 2.40 mm (24 %; P < .01) and C6/7 by 2.64 mm (26%; P < .01) compared with the neutral position. However, no significant increase in foraminal width was observed compared with the neutral position (P > .05), and no significant difference in foraminal height and width increase was observed between FLFR-RL and FLFR-RR.
Conclusion: The results of this study demonstrate that the cervical FLFR-RL position increases the height of the cervical IVF as measured on radiographs.
This abstract is reproduced with the permission of the publisher; full text is available by subscription.