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Type of publication: Journal Article
Type of document: Full Paper

Year: 2010

Authors: Pagger, H; Schmidburg, I; Peham, C; Licka, T

Title: Determination of the stiffness of the equine cervical spine.

Source: Vet J. 2010; 186(3):338-341

Authors Vetmeduni Vienna:

Licka Theresia
Peham Christian

Vetmed Research Units
University Equine Clinic, Clinical Unit of Equine Surgery

This aim of this study was to test the hypothesis that the stiffness of the equine cervical spine depends on the direction of force applied and on spinal position. Muscles and nuchal ligament were removed from the cervical spines of 17 horses that were without a history of cervical or neurological disease. The cervical spines were then flexed/extended dorsoventrally (with the spine straight and with the occiput rotated 30° against T1) and laterolaterally. Mean dorsoventral stiffness was 297 N/m (± 135) in flexion, 1347 N/m (± 2083) in extension, 421 N/m (± 164) in lateral flexion, 279 N/m (± 93) in rotated flexion, and 386 N/m (± 191) in rotated extension. There was a positive correlation between the length of cervical spine and stiffness for dorsoventral flexion (r = 0.63; P < 0.01) and extension (r = 0.53; P < 0.05). The stiffness of the equine cervical spine depended on the direction of the loading and was 2-7 times less than thoracolumbar stiffness in horses.

Keywords Pubmed: Animals
Biomechanical Phenomena
Cervical Vertebrae
Horses/anatomy & histology
Lumbar Vertebrae
Neck/anatomy & histology
Spine/anatomy & histology
Stress, Mechanical

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