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Chiropractic Research Review

Sacroiliac Adjustments for Knee Muscle Inhibition?

Empirical evidence suggests that inhibitory stimuli from the sacroiliac (SI) joint may be responsible for muscle inhibition of the knee extensors. Anterior knee pain (AKP) may coexist with mechanical dysfunction of the SI joint or the lumbar spine, suggesting that conservative low-back care can aid in the rehabilitation process.

A study involving 28 subjects with unilateral or bilateral AKP assessed the effectiveness of SI joint manipulation in reducing lower limb muscle inhibition (MI).

Patients were randomly assigned to a treatment group or a control group and received a low-back functional assessment. The treatment group then received spinal manipulation aimed at correcting SI-joint dysfunction; the control group received no joint manipulation.

Before and after manipulation (or in the case of the control group, before and after functional assessment), the authors measured knee-extensor moments, MI and muscle activation during full-effort isometric knee extensions. Results indicated that SI-joint manipulation significantly reduced muscle inhibition (7.5% decrease in MI) in the affected legs of the treatment group. MI did not change in the contralateral legs of the treatment group or in the involved or contralateral legs of the control group.

These findings suggest that SI-joint manipulation reduces knee-extensor MI. The authors note that their findings emphasize the potential value of spinal manipulation in treating MI in the lower limb musculature.

Suter E, McMorland G, Herzog W, et al. Conservative lower back treatment reduces inhibition in knee-extensor muscles: a randomized controlled trial. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, Feb. 2000:23(2), pp76-80.
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Chiropractic Research Review

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