The Spineangel: Examining the validity and reliability of a novel clinical device for monitoring trunk motion

Pattariya Intolo, Allan B Carman, Stephan Milosavljevic, J Haxby Abbott, G David Baxter
Manual Therapy 2010, 15 (2): 160-6
Spinal loading in excessive and repeated trunk flexion may hinder recovery from acute low back pain. The Spineangel device provides real-time patient biofeedback on trunk flexion and may facilitate recovery from lower back injury. This cross-sectional study evaluates validity and reliability of this device in the laboratory setting. Participants included 18 healthy males. Angular displacements were simultaneously obtained from a Spineangel device placed on the hip and criterion measures of hip, lumbar and total sagittal rotation, and pelvic tilt obtained via 3D Motion Analysis. Each participant repeated four movements five times in a random order (forward bending fingertips-to-knees and to mid-lower leg, full flexion, and full extension). Intraclass correlation coefficients (ICC) for Spineangel measurement of trunk motion were excellent (ICC>0.9). The coefficient of repeatability was less than 5.2 degrees in both flexion and extension. Spineangel showed the highest correlation with Motion Analysis((R)) measurement of pelvic tilt with no statistical difference between measures when bending forward to fingertips-to-knees. Given its high reliability, the Spineangel device has potential as a trunk flexion biofeedback device. Further investigation is required to see if these laboratory results can be reproduced in the clinical setting and to determine the clinical benefits of such a device.

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