Articular dysfunction patterns in patients with mechanical neck pain: a clinical algorithm to guide specific mobilization and manipulation techniques
Structural and chiropractic
Man Ther.2014 Feb;19(1):2-9.
V Dewitte, A Beernaert, B Vanthillo, T Barbe, L Danneels, B Cagnie
In view of a didactical approach for teaching cervical mobilization and manipulation techniques to students as well as their use in daily practice, it is mandatory to acquire sound clinical reasoning to optimally apply advanced technical skills. The aim of this Masterclass is to present a clinical algorithm to guide (novice) therapists in their clinical reasoning to identify patients who are likely to respond to mobilization and/or manipulation. The presented clinical reasoning process is situated within the context of pain mechanisms and is narrowed to and applicable in patients with a dominant input pain mechanism. Based on key features in subjective and clinical examination, patients with mechanical nociceptive pain probably arising from articular structures can be categorized into specific articular dysfunction patterns. Pending on these patterns, specific mobilization and manipulation techniques are warranted. The proposed patterns are illustrated in 3 case studies. This clinical algorithm is the corollary of empirical expertise and is complemented by in-depth discussions and knowledge exchange with international colleagues. Consequently, it is intended that a carefully targeted approach contributes to an increase in specificity and safety in the use of cervical mobilizations and manipulation techniques as valuable adjuncts to other manual therapy modalities.