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December 2022

J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 1993 Oct; 16(8): 523-6.

Cavitation sounds during spinal manipulative treatments.

Herzog W, Zhang YT, Conway PJ, Kawchuk GN.

Faculty of Physical Education, University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to confirm a practitioner's perception of cavitation during spinal manipulative therapy in a clinically relevant situation using accelerometer recordings. DESIGN: Experimental study. SETTING: Human Performance Laboratory and Sports Medicine Center, University of Calgary. PARTICIPANTS: Twenty-eight patients from a single practitioner's patient pool who had pain in the area of the thoracic spine. INTERVENTION: Spinal manipulative treatment (SMT) on the transverse process of T4 using a reinforced unilateral contact and delivering a thrust in the posterior to anterior direction. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Instantaneous acceleration signals obtained from the spinous process of T3 during SMT and the practitioner's perception if cavitation had occurred or not at the end of each treatment. CONCLUSIONS: It appears that cavitation may be measured during SMT using accelerometry and that a practitioner's perception of the occurrence of cavitation during SMT is very accurate.

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