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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Investigation of thoracic spine and muscle morphology with open upright MRI Pai S., Anoosha


Spinal muscles play an important role in two inter-related clinical problems in the thoracolumbar spine: 1) age-related progressive kyphosis and 2) proximal junctional kyphosis (PJK) following correction surgery. Although these disorders occur largely in the thoracic spine and show symptoms in weight-bearing postures, studies have not investigated thoracic muscles in postures other than supine. Moreover, almost all the image-based thoracolumbar models are developed from muscle data obtained from supine imaging, which questions its credibility. Hence the objectives of this study were to i) analyze the effect of posture on thoracic spinal muscle parameters in different postures, and ii) develop a method for translation of MRI-derived spinal and muscle data into a thoracolumbar biomechanical model. Two regions (T4-T5 and T8-T9) of the thorax of six healthy volunteers were imaged (0.5T MROpen, Paramed, Genoa, Italy) in four postures (supine, standing, sitting, and flexion). Descriptive guidelines were developed to identify and quantify three muscles- trapezius (TZ), erector spine (ES), and transversospinalis (TS) from axial MR images. Intra- and Inter- segmentation repeatability was assessed using ICC(3,1). The effect of spinal level and posture on muscle parameters (cross-sectional area (CSA) and position (radius and angle)) was evaluated using 2-way repeated measures ANOVA (p

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