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US Department of Defense awards University of South Florida $1.59 million for musculoskeletal research
Date:9/22/2011

arch in the back. Studies have shown that targeting this muscle group with specialized exercise protocols helped reduced the risk of low back injury in civilian workers, but the approach has not been transferred widely to military settings.

The low back injury study will be led by John Mayer, DC, PhD, associate professor and Lincoln Endowed Chair in Biomechanical & Chiropractic Research at the USF School of Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation Sciences. The USF team will work with co-investigator John Childs, PT, PhD, MBA, associate professor and director of research in the U.S. Army-Baylor University Doctoral Program in Physical Therapy. Dr. Childs and the Army Medical Department (AMEDD) Center and School are partnering with the The Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine, Inc. to conduct the study, which USF designed and will oversee. The trial will enroll soldiers in the 232nd Combat Medic Brigade at AMEDD Center and School, a comprehensive military medical training facility in Fort Sam Houston, TX.

"The lumbar extensors are a weak link for back pain. People with poor strength and endurance of this muscle group are more prone to back injury." Dr. Mayer said. "Our ultimate goal is to determine whether an advanced exercise protocol targeting lumbar extensor muscles will be preventive in essence, inoculating soldiers against low back injury and pain in the extremely physically demanding field of combat."

Low back pain is one of the most frequent causes of medical visits and lost training and duty time in the U.S. Armed Forces, according to a report by the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Center. A recent study from Germany indicated that only 13 percent of soldiers evacuated out of combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan for back pain ever return to active duty. Often, injuries leading to disabling back pain were not sustained directly during battle, but in the interim after a fall, while l
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Contact: Anne DeLotto Baier
abaier@health.usf.edu
813-974-3300
University of South Florida (USF Health)
Source:Eurekalert  

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US Department of Defense awards University of South Florida $1.59 million for musculoskeletal research
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