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Brazilian Journal of Physical Therapy

Print version ISSN 1413-3555On-line version ISSN 1809-9246


CHAVES, TC et al. Reliability of fleximetry and goniometry for assessing cervical range of motion among children. Rev. bras. fisioter. [online]. 2008, vol.12, n.4, pp.283-289. ISSN 1809-9246.

OBJECTIVE: To determine the intra and interrater reliability of fleximetry and goniometry in children and correlate the cervical spine range of motion (ROM) values obtained from these methods. METHODS: One hundred six children participated in this study: 49 males (8.91±2.09 years) and 57 females (9.14±1.46 years). Their ages ranged from six to 14 years and symptom-free to cervical dysfunction. Two previously trained raters and two assistants assessed neck ROM. The measurements were made using fleximetry and goniometry (interrater reliability) and repeated them one week later (intrarater reliability). All measurements were made three times by each rater and the mean value was used for statistical analysis. Intraclass correlation coefficients (ICC 2.1 and 2.2) were used to investigate reliability and Pearson's correlation coefficient (p<0.05) was used to investigate the correlation between measurements obtained from the two techniques. RESULTS: Moderate and excellent levels for intrarater reliability were observed for fleximetry and moderate reliability for goniometry. The interrater reliability was moderate and excellent for fleximetry and poor and moderate for goniometry. Significantly poor correlation was found among all neck ROM measurements obtained using both techniques, except for rotation to the left. CONCLUSIONS: The poor correlation between neck ROM measurements obtained from fleximetry and goniometry demonstrated that these techniques do not present interchangeable measurements. Since fleximetry presented higher reliability levels for assessments of neck ROM among children, the use of fleximetry rather than goniometry is recommended.

Keywords : range of motion; cervical spine; goniometry; fleximetry; reliability; children.

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