USE OF NMT FOR TREATMENT OF LOWER BACK PAIN
Physiotherapist, PoliclinicoUniversitario A.Gemelli
Without doubt our modern lifestyle contains many conditions that bring on back pain. Then there are the harmful effects of those jobs that require workers to stay in one position or remain standing for long periods of time or to repeatedly lift heavy objects, etc. The relationship between work activity and the occurrence of lower back pain may be viewed from two aspects: the significance of work as a pathogenic factor in lower back pain and lower back pain as a source of additional costs for production and for society as a whole.
The prevalence (the number of cases present at a given moment) of low back pain in the overall population of industrialized nations varies between 12 and 35%. The incidence (the probability of suffering from lower back pain during one’s lifespan) varies between 60% and 80%, while 25% of all workers suffer from back pain each year (J.W. Frymoyer, 1991: Pope, 1984). Pathologies of the spine are the most frequent cause of absenteeism from work. At the top of the list are the painful cervical syndromes and those of the lumbar region, followed by so-called painful shoulder syndromes. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), places these pathologies in second place on its list of the ten most significant workplace health problems.
In the United States alone, low back pain is said to cause an average of 28.6 sick days for every 100 workers. Spinal pathologies are the main cause of job limitation among persons under 45, with indemnity for job-related back problems responsible for 33% of all compensation costs. It has been estimated that this affliction costs US industry around 13 billion dollars each year in terms of treatment and insurance payouts (FrymoyerJ.W., 1991).
60-70% of workplace accidents areexertion related injuries that take the form of acute low back pain (U.S. Department of Labor Statistics, 1994). Due to its multi-factor etiology, low back pain is not easy to categorize or interpret, while it is not always of organic or mechanical origin.
Right Lumbar-Sacral Spine
One cycle of decompressive application was applied to the lumbar paraspinal muscles and to the side in the quadratus lumborum muscle region in order to ensure greater, coherent stability to the lumbosacral area, associated with one decompressive application to the low back.
How it works at the Level of the Lumbar Spine
The lumbar application offers a strong eccentric decompressive stimulus across the entire lumbar fascia, thereby ensuring indirect articular support with anti-gravity stimulus. The dorsal application offers equal amounts of decompression and indirect support.
Assessment of Benefits
Right from the first application, substantial improvement in the objective ROM measurement of anterior flexion and lateral inclination of the trunk was observed, using a spirit-level inclinometer at T0, T1 and T2 (T0 is pre-application, T1 is post-application and T2 is the measurement taken 4 days after the first application). There were increases of around 10° on each parameter. There was also improvement in pain levels as measured by the visual-analogue (VAS) pain assessment scale at T0, T1 and T2.
Already on the day following application, the patient felt “relieved of the weight of her own body” and more relaxed in her everyday movements. There was a marked improvement in her walking, now possible over medium distances.
The NeuroMuscular Taping concept bases its principles on simple biomechanics by providing decompression where body structures require it.
The second case also concerns a decompressive lumbar treatment. A 33-year-old man complained of acute low back pain, brought on mainly when he remained in a seated position for long periods. He was unable to maintain a normal upright position: in order to avoid feeling pain, he was forced to bend forwards and to one side (lateral side bend).
Application of NeuroMuscular Taping
(Four days post application)
How it Works at the Level of
the Lumbar Spine
Thanks to indirect articular support and to improvement in local drainage in the twenty-four hours following application, the patient was able to rapidly overcome the painful stage, specifically with complete resolution of painful symptoms brought on by antalgic muscle spasms.
Assessment of Benefits
For this patient too there was ROM improvement of around 10° in every movement. Pain resolution was assessed using the VAS measurement. What was interesting to observe was the visible shift in posture, also noticeable in the imaging results, in which the patient went from an analgetic lateral shift position to a normal pain-free posture.
With the NMT Concept we can improve the quality of life of our patients, whether elderly or young. Improvement occurs over a short time with relatively reduced treatment costs. In view of the socio-economic impact and costs that certain afflictions such as low back pain incur through absenteeism from work and excessive use of drugs, recourse to natural and cost-saving methods using such highly effective methods as the NMT Concept become increasingly important at this time in history.