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European Spine Journal

, Volume 19, Issue 2, pp 331–332 | Cite as

Expanding our view of the spine system

  • N. Peter Reeves
  • Jacek Cholewicki
Letter to the Editor

Dear Editor,

This letter does not address specifically any particular article, but rather the larger body of work that exists in the spine literature. There exists a critical barrier for improving our understanding of the spine system, which stems from our characterization of stability and our application of reductionist methods. These limitations highlight the need for a new approach to study the spine.

Clearly for any system, including the spine, to fulfill its intended goal or function requires the system to be stable. For the spine, stable behavior allows it to bear loads, permits controlled movement, while avoiding injury and pain. Although there is some debate whether spine instability occurs in the classic sense, there is no debate that the spine must be stable to function.

It is a well-established theory that systems require feedback control for stability. With feedback control, information about the state of the system is used to generate stabilizing control input. This is...

Keywords

Feedback Control Spine System Inverted Pendulum Trunk Muscle Degenerative Disc Disease 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

References

  1. 1.
    Bergmark A (1989) Stability of the lumbar spine: a study in mechanical engineering. Acta Orthop Scand Suppl 230:1–54PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Cholewicki J, McGill SM (1996) Mechanical stability of the in vivo lumbar spine: implications for injury and chronic low back pain. Clin Biomech 11:1–15CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Gardner-Morse M, Stokes IA, Laible JP (1995) Role of muscles in lumbar spine stability in maximum extension efforts. J Orthop Res 13:802–808CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Granata KP, Marras WS (2000) Cost–benefit of muscle cocontraction in protecting against spinal instability. Spine 25:1398–1404CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Osteopathic Surgical Specialties, College of Osteopathic MedicineMichigan State UniversityLansingUSA

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