Vibration Research

It is common to find people with back pain when exposed to vibration, especially when the spine is flexed forward in combination. In a recent prize winning vibration research paper titled: “Vibration Really Does Disrupt the Disc”

1 researchers looked to sheep spines (which are known to be most similar to humans when using an animal model) and used vibration loading to test to see if damage could be caused to the internal aspect of the discs.

Using forces of 1300N +/- 500N (approximately 135 kg-force) they cycled the load in a sinusoidal way at a rate of 5Hz. This can be explained as 5 oscillative pushes in 1 second for 20,000-48,000 times (low dose) and also for 70,000-128,000 times (high dose).

What was interesting was they found no catastrophic failure in both the low rate or the high rate doses of vibration but progressive internal damage to the annular fibres. Using specialized imaging techniques, they were able to see the effect of vibration on the most inner fibres of the intervertebral disc.

vibration research, back pain, nanaimo, chiropractor

Vibration can cause internal disruption to the annular fibres of the intervertebral disc

Whole body vibration experienced by a huge percentage of workers appear to be implcated  is a vast array of musculoskeletal injuries; back pain being frequent. 2

The researchers concluded that the findings of this vibration research could lead to a better understanding on how degeneration begins in the discs of the spine. They found that the damage induced by the vibration is slow and progressive rather than an acute one time catastrophic failure event and could provide some serious clues on how back pain develops.

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