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2022 Mar 21

Int J Environ Res Public Health



Physical Function in Amateur Athletes with Lumbar Disc Herniation and Chronic Low Back Pain: A Case-Control Study.


Miñambres-Martín D, Martín-Casas P, López-de-Uralde-Villanueva I, Fernández-de-Las-Peñas C, Valera-Calero J A, Plaza-Manzano G
Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2022 Mar 21; 19(6).
PMID: 35329430.


This study aimed to analyze if chronic low back pain (LBP) and lumbar disc herniation induce biomechanics, flexibility, body balance, physical activity, and muscular function alterations compared to a similar asymptomatic cohort. Fifty male volunteers ( = 25 with chronic LBP and lumbar disc herniation and = 25 pain-free subjects) were enrolled. Range of motion (internal and external hip rotation, ankle dorsiflexion, and active straight leg raise, ASLR), trunk flexibility (finger-floor distance), body balance (Y-balance test) and muscle function (Biering-Sorensen test, prone and lateral bridges) outcomes were assessed. Comparative analyses between sides and group were conducted. Results: Patients showed greater weight and BMI compared with controls ( < 0.05). None of the outcomes bilaterally assessed showed side-to-side differences for pain-free participants (all, > 0.05) or LBP patients (all, > 0.05). Regarding the differences between groups, LBP patients showed limited internal hip rotation ( < 0.001), finger-floor distance ( < 0.001), body balance ( < 0.001), and muscle endurance (planks < 0.001; Biering-Sorensen test < 0.05). External hip rotation, ASLR, and ankle dorsiflexion range of movement were comparable in both groups ( > 0.05). The sample of pain-free amateur athletes showed greater range of movement for internal hip rotation, lower finger-floor distance, better body balance, and muscle function. However, the external hip rotation, ankle dorsiflexion, and ASLR tests showed no difference between cases and controls.