Steps towards the validation of the Trendelenburg test : The effect of experimentally reduced hip abductor muscle function on frontal plane mechanics

Kendall, Karen, Patel, Chirag, Wiley, Preston, Pohl, Michael, Emery, Carolyn, & Ferber, Reed (2012) Steps towards the validation of the Trendelenburg test : The effect of experimentally reduced hip abductor muscle function on frontal plane mechanics. In Demont, Richard (Ed.) CATA 2012 : 46th Annual Canadian Athletic Therapist Association Conference, 23-26 May 2012, Quebec City, Quebec, Canada.

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Introduction: The Trendelenburg Test (TT) is used to assess the functional strength of the hip abductor muscles (HABD), their ability to control frontal plane motion of the pelvis, and the ability of the lumbopelvic complex to transfer load into single leg stance.

Rationale: Although a standard method to perform the test has been described for use within clinical populations, no study has directly investigated Trendelenburg’s hypotheses. Purpose: To investigate the validity of the TT using an ultrasound guided nerve block (UNB) of the superior gluteal nerve and determine whether the reduction in HABD strength would result in the theorized mechanical compensatory strategies measured during the TT.

Methods: Quasi-experimental design using a convenience sample of nine healthy males. Only subjects with no current or previous injury to the lumbar spine, pelvis, or lower extremities, and no previous surgeries were included. Force dynamometry was used to evaluation HABD strength (%BW). 2D mechanics were used to evaluate contralateral pelvic drop (cMPD), change in contralateral pelvic drop (∆cMPD), ipsilateral hip adduction (iHADD) and ipsilateral trunk sway (TRUNK) measured in degrees (°). All measures were collected prior to and following a UNB on the superior gluteal nerve performed by an interventional radiologist. Results: Subjects’ age was median 31yrs (IQR:22-32yrs); and weight was median 73kg (IQR:67-81kg). An average 52% reduction of HABD strength (z=2.36,p=0.02) resulted following the UNB. No differences were found in cMPD or ∆cMPD (z=0.01,p= 0.99, z=-0.67,p=0.49). Individual changes in biomechanics show no consistency between subjects and non-systematic changes across the group. One subject demonstrated the mechanical compensations described by Trendelenburg.

Discussion: The TT should not be used as screening measure for HABD strength in populations demonstrating strength greater than 30%BW but reserved for use with populations with marked HABD weakness.

Importance: This study presents data regarding a critical level of HABD strength required to support the pelvis during the TT.

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 60073
Item Type: Conference Item (Poster)
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Trendelenburg Test , hip abductor muscles, ultrasound guided nerveblock
ISSN: 1942-5872
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Schools > School of Exercise & Nutrition Sciences
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2012 Althletic Training and Sports Health Care (Slack Incorporated).
Deposited On: 20 May 2013 02:01
Last Modified: 22 May 2013 07:15

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