Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT)
First Committee Member
Second Committee Member
Robbin Hickman, Research Project Coordinator
Number of Pages
Summary of background data: Intractable cervical radiculopathy secondary to stenosis or herniated nucleus pulposus is commonly treated with an anterior cervical decompression and fusion procedure (ACDF). However, there is little evidence in the literature that demonstrates the impact such surgery has on long term range of motion outcomes
Study Design: Prospective, non--‐experimental.
Objective: The objective of this study was to compare cervical range of motion and patient reported outcomes in patients before and after a 1, 2 or 3 level ACDF.
Patient Sample: 46 patients.
Methods: Patients undergoing an ACDF for cervical radiculopathy had their cervical range of motion measured preoperatively, and also at 3 months and 6 months following the procedure. Neck Disability Index and pain visual analog scale values were also recorded at the same time.
Outcome Measures: The following were measured preoperatively and also at 3 months and 6 months after ACDF: active range of motion (full and painfree) in three planes (i.e., sagittal, coronal and horizontal), pain Visual Analog Scale (VAS), Neck Disability Index (NDI), and headache frequency. The following were measured preoperatively and also at 3 months and 6 months after ACDF: active range of motion (full and painfree) in three planes (i.e., sagittal, coronal and horizontal), pain Visual Analog Scale (VAS), Neck Disability Index (NDI), and headache frequency.
Results: Both painfree and full active range of motion did not change significantly from the preoperative measurement to the 3 month postoperative measurement (ps > .05). However, painfree and full active range of motion did increase significantly in all three iv planes of motion from the preoperative measurement to the 6 month postoperative measurement regardless of the number of levels fused (ps ≤ .023). VAS, NDI and headache frequency all improved significantly over time (ps ≤ .017).
Conclusion: Our results suggest that patients who have had an ACDF for cervical radiculopathy will experience improved range of motion in the long term following their procedure. In addition, patients can expect a decrease in pain, an improvement in neck function, and a decrease in headache frequency over the long term.
Cervical vertebrae; Joints—Range of motion; Neck – Diseases; Neck – Wounds and injuries; Outcomes; Radiculopathy; Range of motion
Musculoskeletal System | Other Rehabilitation and Therapy | Physical Therapy | Rehabilitation and Therapy
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Addis, Kate; Longhurst, Jason; and vom Steeg, Bree-lyn, "Anterior Cervical Decompression and Fusion on Neck Range of Motion, Pain and Function: A Prospective Analysis" (2013). UNLV Theses, Dissertations, Professional Papers, and Capstones. 1506.
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