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Cervicocephalic Relocation Test to the Neutral Head Position: Assessment in Bilateral Labyrinthine-Defective and Chronic, Nontraumatic Neck Pain Patients

      Abstract

      Pinsault N, Vuillerme N, Pavan P. Cervicocephalic relocation test to the neutral head position: assessment in bilateral labyrinthine-defective and chronic, nontraumatic neck pain patients.

      Objective

      To determine whether vestibular or cervical proprioceptive information influence the cervicocephalic relocation test to the neutral head position, by comparing head repositioning errors obtained in asymptomatic, unimpaired control subjects with those obtained in bilateral labyrinthine-defective patients and chronic, nontraumatic neck pain patients.

      Design

      A group-comparison study.

      Setting

      University medical bioengineering laboratory.

      Participants

      Labyrinthine-defective patients (n=7; mean age ± SD, 67±15y), nontraumatic neck pain patients (n=7; 56±9y), and asymptomatic, unimpaired control subjects (n=7; 64±12y).

      Interventions

      Participants were asked to relocate the head on the trunk, as accurately as possible, after full active cervical rotation to the left and right sides. Ten trials were performed for each rotation side.

      Main Outcome Measures

      Absolute and variable errors were used to assess accuracy and consistency of the repositioning, respectively.

      Results

      No significant difference in repositioning errors was observed between labyrinthine-defective patients and control subjects, whereas nontraumatic neck pain patients demonstrated significantly increased absolute errors in horizontal and global components and higher variable errors in horizontal component.

      Conclusions

      These findings suggest that the vestibular system is not involved in the performance of the cervicocephalic relocation test to neutral head position, and further support this test as a measure of cervical proprioceptive acuity.

      Key Words

      List of Abbreviations:

      NHP (neutral head position)
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